The morning after #richardarmitage [spoilers]

•November 19, 2017 • 2 Comments

From Berlin Station 2.7. I recommend watching this with the sound off. The dialogue is eye-rolling.

Collateral attractions: The more things change …

•November 18, 2017 • 5 Comments

Sitting in the living room, wondering how the gun hunt is going, grading essays about Plato’s Allegory of the Cave, with Star Trek: Voyager on. Love Star Trek, but didn’t really watch much of this series. And whose voice do I hear?

I wonder if Leland Orser and Michelle Forbes ever compare notes about Star Trek.

Some fun Castlevania stuff #richardarmitage

•November 18, 2017 • 4 Comments

And some drawings.

One more hour of Guyday #richardarmitage

•November 18, 2017 • 2 Comments

This photo’s been sitting on my desktop for a long time. Not sure why. But it arrested me. Happy Guyday Friday for 58 more minutes!

A scene from Berlin Station 2.7 #richardarmitage [spoilers]

•November 17, 2017 • 2 Comments

He didn’t shave!!

Make love to the camera #richardarmitage

•November 17, 2017 • Leave a Comment

Hmm. #berlinstation #richardarmitage

•November 17, 2017 • Leave a Comment

Here‘s a report on Viacom’s Q4 earnings in which Berlin Station is mentioned. The big takeaway is that Viacom stock plunged 9% in Thursday trading but picked up half of that again across the day, and that the company’s revenue earnings (+3%) beat analyst forecasts.

I think that to some extent this mention is tangential since Viacom sold its share in EPIX to MGM, which improved its balance sheet somewhat (Viacom “recognized a gain of $285 million on net proceeds of $593 million from the sale of its 49.8% stake in Epix to MGM earlier this year”), although apparently Paramount TV (which Viacom still owns) is / was still involved in producing Berlin Station. So they reduced their exposure in distribution but maintained it in production, and Paramount as a whole still seems to be in horrible shape.

At Paramount, revenue for the quarter inched up 2% to $789 million, driven by growth in licensing revenues even as theatrical revenue plunged 43% to $115 million. Domestic revenues fell 11% to $317 million in the quarter, while international coin grew 13% to $472 million.[¶] The film unit posted an operating loss of $43 million for the quarter and a loss of $280 million for the full year. Both of those marked double-digit improvements over the nearly $500 million in red ink posted in 2016.

However, the Paramount TV division seems to be doing better than film.

Davis also said they are expecting “hundreds of millions of dollars of improvement” in Paramount’s operating income for fiscal 2018. The Paramount Television division saw its revenue triple during fiscal 2017, thanks to the success and renewals for series including USA Network’s “Shooter,” Netflix’s “13 Reasons Why” and Epix’s “Berlin Station.”

It’s not a statement about series renewal (this is referring to the renewal for 2017, which we are watching right now), although it could be read to imply that Davis expected a season 3. However,  it implies that Berlin Station is a revenue contributor / asset as opposed to a liability, at least for the television production company. I don’t know if that relies on actual figures, i.e., if those three renewals specifically generated the most revenue, or if renewals generally speaking were the revenue generator and those are three examples of Paramount TV series. Or maybe it’s just those three were the most expensive to make and thus they generated the greatest benefit to Paramount TV, which has no bearing on what EPIX paid for them.

Anyway, this is my question: I’ve been reading Berlin Station as a loss leader in getting people to EPIX (or have been feeling like the press coverage of the premiere last year, including statements by EPIX principals, suggested it was a loss leader). But maybe it’s not, if we consider that the earnings in the report were greater for all international markets than for the U.S. domestic market, and we know Berlin Station was sold widely outside the U.S., i.e., to international distributors other than EPIX.

Or maybe I’m confused. It’s possible. Business isn’t a strong point of mine and I found this article hard to decipher.

Also, I wonder, now that EPIX is owned by MGM and not by Viacom, if MGM is going to continue to want to pay a Viacom subdivision to produce the series. I guess I should look for the MGM Q4 earnings report …

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