Dec 01, 2020
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Canadian viewers’ film, TV consumption goes over the top

Wading through the “cat videos of VR” can be a trying task when all Keegan McColl wants is to distribute premium virtual reality content to his company’s users.

The director of business development at Vancouver-based Reelhouse has spent four years offering filmmakers platforms to digitally distribute their 2D content directly to viewers. No need for traditional film distributors or even over-the-top (OTT) services like Netflix (Nasdaq: NFLX).

“We are primarily focused on virtual reality for this summer,” McColl said. “Over the next few months we’re building a lot more toolsets, and we’re building to be on all of the [VR] headsets by the end of the summer.”

“That’s not to say we’re abandoning 2D. We still have dedicated folks working on that area as well. But from a business perspective, that’s what we’re kind of jumping into aggressively.”

Reelhouse’s catalogue features more than 7,000 videos from filmmakers who set their own prices for viewers to access the content online. The filmmakers retain 90% of the revenue.

And since dipping its toes into the realm of VR content six months ago, McColl said Reelhouse’s catalogue of premium VR content is up to 45 titles.

McColl said the challenge is finding premium content and avoiding the cat videos. He added that the Chinese market is driving much of the demand for more content that can be distributed digitally. This shift to digital distribution is taking a toll on traditional mediums.

The North American box office is slumping so far this summer – down 5% compared with the same period a year ago, according to estimates from BoxOffice.com.

And even stalwart draws like NHL hockey aren’t drawing viewers to their TV sets like they used to. Ratings plummeted 61% year-over-year during the first week of the Stanley Cup playoffs, falling from 1.306 million to 513,000 viewers, according to figures released by Rogers Communications (TSX:RCI.B). Albeit, this year did not feature any Canadian teams vying for the cup.

But a June report from PwC Canada points to OTT services like Netflix and Canadian distributors like Shomi and CraveTV as the main culprits.

The report forecasts that the annual growth of OTT streaming will be 10.3% through to 2020, and that growth will come at the expense of traditional distributors.

During a June visit to B.C, National Film Board (NFB) commissioner Claude Joli-Coeur told Business In Vancouver his federal agency was “almost alone” when it launched its own OTT service in 2009.

“If you now look at all the services seven years after, it’s a huge crowd,” he said.

“We are at a critical moment, and for content owners it’s a real issue.”

Liz Shorten, managing vice-president of the Canadian Media Producers Association’s B.C. branch, said services like Amazon Prime, Netflix, Shomi and CraveTV are creating greater demand for Canadian-produced content.

“One of the challenges we have right now, is in a lot of cases those OTT buyers want to retain all the rights,” she said.

If Netflix is pushing producers to sell their content outright in exchange for distribution, Shorten said that means saying goodbye to back-end revenue.

“They’re acquiring content from some of our members’ libraries, which is amazing,” she said. “They’re starting to commission more and more in Canada, but right now it’s mostly acquisitions and production services. There’s a number of Netflix shows shooting here, but most of those are production services relationships.”

Joli-Coeur, meanwhile, said before the NFB went digital in 2009, it was holding onto 13,000 films that weren’t easily accessible to the public.

“Since that time, we’ve got 80 million views of our films, things that have never been seen,” he said. “Our story should be an example of making our content accessible.”

Source: Business Vancouver

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Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Front Page, Headline, Industry News

Canadian viewers’ film, TV consumption goes over the top

Wading through the “cat videos of VR” can be a trying task when all Keegan McColl wants is to distribute premium virtual reality content to his company’s users.

The director of business development at Vancouver-based Reelhouse has spent four years offering filmmakers platforms to digitally distribute their 2D content directly to viewers. No need for traditional film distributors or even over-the-top (OTT) services like Netflix (Nasdaq: NFLX).

“We are primarily focused on virtual reality for this summer,” McColl said. “Over the next few months we’re building a lot more toolsets, and we’re building to be on all of the [VR] headsets by the end of the summer.”

“That’s not to say we’re abandoning 2D. We still have dedicated folks working on that area as well. But from a business perspective, that’s what we’re kind of jumping into aggressively.”

Reelhouse’s catalogue features more than 7,000 videos from filmmakers who set their own prices for viewers to access the content online. The filmmakers retain 90% of the revenue.

And since dipping its toes into the realm of VR content six months ago, McColl said Reelhouse’s catalogue of premium VR content is up to 45 titles.

McColl said the challenge is finding premium content and avoiding the cat videos. He added that the Chinese market is driving much of the demand for more content that can be distributed digitally. This shift to digital distribution is taking a toll on traditional mediums.

The North American box office is slumping so far this summer – down 5% compared with the same period a year ago, according to estimates from BoxOffice.com.

And even stalwart draws like NHL hockey aren’t drawing viewers to their TV sets like they used to. Ratings plummeted 61% year-over-year during the first week of the Stanley Cup playoffs, falling from 1.306 million to 513,000 viewers, according to figures released by Rogers Communications (TSX:RCI.B). Albeit, this year did not feature any Canadian teams vying for the cup.

But a June report from PwC Canada points to OTT services like Netflix and Canadian distributors like Shomi and CraveTV as the main culprits.

The report forecasts that the annual growth of OTT streaming will be 10.3% through to 2020, and that growth will come at the expense of traditional distributors.

During a June visit to B.C, National Film Board (NFB) commissioner Claude Joli-Coeur told Business In Vancouver his federal agency was “almost alone” when it launched its own OTT service in 2009.

“If you now look at all the services seven years after, it’s a huge crowd,” he said.

“We are at a critical moment, and for content owners it’s a real issue.”

Liz Shorten, managing vice-president of the Canadian Media Producers Association’s B.C. branch, said services like Amazon Prime, Netflix, Shomi and CraveTV are creating greater demand for Canadian-produced content.

“One of the challenges we have right now, is in a lot of cases those OTT buyers want to retain all the rights,” she said.

If Netflix is pushing producers to sell their content outright in exchange for distribution, Shorten said that means saying goodbye to back-end revenue.

“They’re acquiring content from some of our members’ libraries, which is amazing,” she said. “They’re starting to commission more and more in Canada, but right now it’s mostly acquisitions and production services. There’s a number of Netflix shows shooting here, but most of those are production services relationships.”

Joli-Coeur, meanwhile, said before the NFB went digital in 2009, it was holding onto 13,000 films that weren’t easily accessible to the public.

“Since that time, we’ve got 80 million views of our films, things that have never been seen,” he said. “Our story should be an example of making our content accessible.”

Source: Business Vancouver

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Front Page, Headline, Industry News

Canadian viewers’ film, TV consumption goes over the top

Wading through the “cat videos of VR” can be a trying task when all Keegan McColl wants is to distribute premium virtual reality content to his company’s users.

The director of business development at Vancouver-based Reelhouse has spent four years offering filmmakers platforms to digitally distribute their 2D content directly to viewers. No need for traditional film distributors or even over-the-top (OTT) services like Netflix (Nasdaq: NFLX).

“We are primarily focused on virtual reality for this summer,” McColl said. “Over the next few months we’re building a lot more toolsets, and we’re building to be on all of the [VR] headsets by the end of the summer.”

“That’s not to say we’re abandoning 2D. We still have dedicated folks working on that area as well. But from a business perspective, that’s what we’re kind of jumping into aggressively.”

Reelhouse’s catalogue features more than 7,000 videos from filmmakers who set their own prices for viewers to access the content online. The filmmakers retain 90% of the revenue.

And since dipping its toes into the realm of VR content six months ago, McColl said Reelhouse’s catalogue of premium VR content is up to 45 titles.

McColl said the challenge is finding premium content and avoiding the cat videos. He added that the Chinese market is driving much of the demand for more content that can be distributed digitally. This shift to digital distribution is taking a toll on traditional mediums.

The North American box office is slumping so far this summer – down 5% compared with the same period a year ago, according to estimates from BoxOffice.com.

And even stalwart draws like NHL hockey aren’t drawing viewers to their TV sets like they used to. Ratings plummeted 61% year-over-year during the first week of the Stanley Cup playoffs, falling from 1.306 million to 513,000 viewers, according to figures released by Rogers Communications (TSX:RCI.B). Albeit, this year did not feature any Canadian teams vying for the cup.

But a June report from PwC Canada points to OTT services like Netflix and Canadian distributors like Shomi and CraveTV as the main culprits.

The report forecasts that the annual growth of OTT streaming will be 10.3% through to 2020, and that growth will come at the expense of traditional distributors.

During a June visit to B.C, National Film Board (NFB) commissioner Claude Joli-Coeur told Business In Vancouver his federal agency was “almost alone” when it launched its own OTT service in 2009.

“If you now look at all the services seven years after, it’s a huge crowd,” he said.

“We are at a critical moment, and for content owners it’s a real issue.”

Liz Shorten, managing vice-president of the Canadian Media Producers Association’s B.C. branch, said services like Amazon Prime, Netflix, Shomi and CraveTV are creating greater demand for Canadian-produced content.

“One of the challenges we have right now, is in a lot of cases those OTT buyers want to retain all the rights,” she said.

If Netflix is pushing producers to sell their content outright in exchange for distribution, Shorten said that means saying goodbye to back-end revenue.

“They’re acquiring content from some of our members’ libraries, which is amazing,” she said. “They’re starting to commission more and more in Canada, but right now it’s mostly acquisitions and production services. There’s a number of Netflix shows shooting here, but most of those are production services relationships.”

Joli-Coeur, meanwhile, said before the NFB went digital in 2009, it was holding onto 13,000 films that weren’t easily accessible to the public.

“Since that time, we’ve got 80 million views of our films, things that have never been seen,” he said. “Our story should be an example of making our content accessible.”

Source: Business Vancouver

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

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