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How Live Streaming Changed Hollywood

Netflix and Amazon aren’t the only streaming platforms that have captured America’s attention. There is a streaming service for every taste in entertainment. Fans of telenovelas can get their fix at Pongalo while Horror junkies can shiver away with the titles on Shudder. There’s even a streaming platform for those of you who are really into horses. 

The streaming revolution may have just arrived at Hollywood but it has been in the making for over a decade. When Netflix began streaming movies in 2007, it wasn’t taken seriously at all. Today the platform spends over $12 billion on programming. With more platforms mushrooming, the company then stepped up its game by producing original movies and TV content that drew on the talent of some of Hollywood’s biggest names.

Everyone, from directors and producers to on-screen talent wanted a bit of the live streaming pie. Television dramas like ‘Orange is the new black’, ‘House of Cards’ and ‘Stranger Things’ have since swept up awards and have cult followers across the country. Netflix also offered other kinds of content like reality TV, docu-series and satire. Consumers were spoiled for choice.   

Industry insiders are calling the streaming revolution the biggest leap in entertainment since the shift from silent films to talkies. One wonders if traditional studios have taken notice of the changing tides. Media companies like Disney, NBCUniversal, and WarnerMedia had been biding their time. Will they join what they can’t defeat? It isn’t that simple. For these studios, starting a streaming venture will risk billions of dollars pulled from existing cable networks like the USA Network, Disney Channel and TBS.

Not that they haven’t tried. Come spring, WarnerBros will introduce HBOMax and offer over 10,000 hours of instant content. Also set to launch in Spring is Peacock, an NBCUniversal streaming platform offering 15,000 hours worth of content.

This urge to stream and create new content for online platforms has affected the entertainment industry. With direct to consumer content, middlemen like cable operators will have to be made obsolete. Big studios might limit the number of big theatre releases to cater to the new online consumer. Mid-level writers and others working behind the scenes will have to fend new demands and requirements. These and other issues are bound to arise as streamed entertainment forges its own path in the media landscape.

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