We have come a long way as a civilization. In the 21st century, there is virtually nothing that we haven’t achieved that is essential to our living. Just look at the way we consume content. Who would’ve thought 20-30 years ago that we would have hours of content at the tip of our fingers? And much of the credit for revolutionizing the viewing experience goes to Netflix.
But Netflix has been in the streaming game for far too long. And now they have completely changed how films are made and distributed by production houses. This year’s Cannes Film Festival is a testament to that.
Let us see how Netflix and other streamers are changing the film market.
How is Netflix changing the way films are distributed?
The Cannes Film Market, or Marché du Film, has long been the meeting point for the world’s most important independent films. The 355 (then only a scriptless concept) was sold by FilmNation and CAA Media Finance in 2018 after a dramatic photo op on Carlton Beach. The film had an A-list ensemble of Jessica Chastain, Penélope Cruz, Lupita Nyong’o, and Fan Bingbing.
The next year, AGC Studios and CAA released Moonfall. It was a $150 million film that was presold internationally in Cannes before a single second of footage was shot.
However, the Marché’s focus has shifted to smaller, more art house titles. This is because of the poor performance of those two would-be tentpoles (The 355 has grossed $28 million worldwide. While Moonfall has grossed $43 million.)
There also is a shift in the global market — including an increase in global buyout deals from streaming giants like Netflix and Apple TV+. They generally buy fully completed films rather than scripted packages.
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While talking about the shift in the film market. Jonathan Kier, president of Upgrade Productions and Bron Releasing, believed that the new trend of buying finished films is something that the streamers have brought.
“Part of this has to do with the streamers and studios, they tend to buy finished films, not at the script stage,” said Kier. The buzziest films headed to the 2022 Marché are “diverse” and “eclectic.”
They include dramas, thrillers, and comedies starring Julia Garner, Juliette Binoche, and Woody Harrelson.
Do you also think that nowadays films only have value when they are complete? Or is it something that the streaming giants are trying to feed us and everyone?