Hollywood gets caught up in IP

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The Future. Buzzy books, articles, comics, and podcasts were hot commodities all summer, with film and TV rights (especially TV) being the only dealmaking that could happen while writers and actors were (and still are on, as far as actors go) strike. Some believe all the dealmaking is a strike bubble that could pop as Hollywood contracts and content spends become more conservative. If true, that could make companies unwilling to jump into the bidding frenzy turn to original (and cheaper to purchase) stories.

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Despite the strikes, Hollywood execs kept busy.

  • Even though only directors and producers could attach to IP, bidding was sky-high for podcasts like The Girlfriends and viral articles like Esquire’s “Daddy Ball,” with authors and creators commanding up to 10x the amount of money they used to a decade ago.
  • And it’s not the legacy studios who are behind the winning bids — it’s a mix of streamers (Netflix and Amazon, of course), premium indie outfits (A24, MRC), and A-list production companies (Margot Robbie’s LuckyChap).

Michelle Weiner, co-head of CAA’s books department, credits the IP boom to “a combination of streaming and the volume that’s necessary to power a streaming service, as well as the number of TV studios that now exist out in the world and the number of independent financiers that are meaningful and successful.”

Lately, IP — any IP, really — gives studios some measure of security in pouring millions of dollars into a project. And with so many options out there, everyone’s trying to break through the noise.

That’s a potent cocktail for authors, journalists, and podcast creators… and potentially a boon for screenwriters looking for a job post-strike. As one programmer told THR: “Without a writer POV, who cares?”

David Vendrell

Born and raised a stone’s-throw away from the Everglades, David left the Florida swamp for the California desert. Over-caffeinated, he stares at his computer too long either writing the TFP newsletter or screenplays. He is repped by Anonymous Content.


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