MUSIC PARTNER NEWS
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LIVE CONCERTS AND FESTIVALS
The coronavirus has slowdown and even stopped many industries. The entertainment has been affected on many levels, from production of films and TV shows to concerts and other live representations. With the growth of music streaming, singers and musicians had to find ways to compensate their incomes for the lack of revenue usually generated by the sale of CDs and Vinyl's.
Concerts had been the solution to them. Live representations of all scales were a great way to make money while promoting their creations and keeping their names in the news.
It has been a year since all live representations have stopped but there seems to be some hope with a planned reopening of concerts and festivals this summer.
Michael Rapino CEO of Live Nation, recently said that largescale concerts could start again by mid summer with a 75% to 100% capacity.
Of course, the decision to re-open this kind of events is not the sole decision of the promoters. State Governors would need to give the "green light", and it would be for outdoor events only. This summer could be the beginning of a somewhat return to normal...
For the first time in its history, the Berlinale was an online event.
The festival had been an important part of the city's economy, bustling with its restaurants, bars and night clubs, small venue concerts etc.
Berlin like all major cities collects a huge part of its revenues from tourism and activities such as the Berlinale.
Populated with a majority of young people who are still there, Berlin is today a shadow of itself waiting patiently for the virus to disappear and resume the activities that have made Berlin the special place it is.
Meanwhile, the Berlinale online was running and films were competing. Here is the results of the 2021 edition.
- GOLDEN BEAR goes to: "Bad luck banging or looney porn" directed by Radu Jude
- SILVER BEAR goes to "Wheel of fortune and fantasy" directed by Ryusuke Hamaguchi
Full prizes list and mentions on the Berlinal website: www.berlinale.de
EUROPE AND THE STREAMERS
Late last year, an important number of European Directors and Producers have signed a petition demanding that American streaming giants such as Netflix and Amazon, reinvest 25% of their European revenues into European productions.
The AVMS: Audiovisual Media Services gave the EU sometime to create a level playing field for emerging audiovisual media while preserving cultural diversity.
The problem in Europe is that diversity is such, all countries forming the continent have different priorities.
Portugal was the first country to publish its requirements, and actors from the industry in the Iberia Peninsula were more than disappointed after Portugal did not require contributions to the Portuguese National Film Fund.
Artists on the European continent haves made it clear, 25% reinvested locally from which 80% would go to independent productions in original language for films and series.
The petition goes further and ask the European Commission to enforce the rules, being on top of how streaming giants reinvest their money.
At the origin was the demand to see at least 30% of the offering produced locally but countries such as France and Italy went further with an automatic reinvestment of the profits made in these countries into local productions.
Streaming platforms have taken advantage of the pandemic to acquire new subscribers forced to stay home. With big studio means, Netflix, Amazon, Disney + and others put international independent productions at a disadvantage. France as lead the way with its demands which have been voted into law. If streamers want to keep doing business in France, they will have to follow their law.
PEPE LE PEW AND CANCEL CULTURE
France has for long been attached to the image of good food, good wine, the city of lights and romance.
The romance part had been caricatured in a cartoon produced by Warner Bros at the end of the second world war, where a skunk roamed the streets of Paris in search of
love. Pepe le pew was born.
A recent tweet from a New York Times columnist, chastised the cartoon for its message contributing to misbehavior with women.
Penelope Pussycat who is the love interest of Pepe is often struggling when Pepe is trying to kiss her against her will, keeping her tight while she wants to escape. The persistence of Pepe to act forcefully is what that tweet was underlining, even adding that Pepe is contributing to the "rape culture".
The times have changed. I am from a generation where the "Merry Melodies" cartoons of Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Ton and Jerry, Tweety bird and Pepe le pew were staples on my family's television when I was a kid. It did not influence my behavior with women later in life. Today's television is full of reprehensible behaviors. Attacking Pepe le pew may not be the right target.
GENERATION X, Y, Z...
Each generation has its TV landmarks. The Baby Boomers born right after the war had "Gilligan's Island, The Time Tunnel or Bewitched". Generation X born after 1964 had "Dallas, MASH or Charlie's Angels", the Millennials born after 1981 had "The Fresh Prince of Bel Air, Friends, Seinfeld or The Simpsons". Generation Z born after 1997 had "Game of Thrones, Veep, Silicon Valley or Atlanta".
The new generation of kids who are now 10, are called Generation Alpha.
Born in a fast pace environment, Generation Alpha's education is taking place mostly online, with a palette of information at their disposal, no one else has ever had. Sorting the right information today is still an issue but it will get better. The social environment of Generation Alpha is fundamentally different then previous generations. so much has happened in such a short period of time: Alpha will not question Gay marriage or abortion rights. They will not be able to conceive their lives without technology. We may see a revers exodus from the expensive urban life to the countryside, made easier with remote work from home, encouraged by companies saving on expensive rent for offices.
As they get to adulthood, Generation Alpha will need to be entertained, and the question is already being debated by TV producers in search of new and modern topics for Alpha. But will TV be the medium of choice?
Producers are looking at multi media vehicles.
THEATERS IN NEW YORK
Signs of life are emerging in movie theaters for the second weekend of March.
The box office sees a 525% increase from the previous weekend. Many theaters are hanging by a thread and the success of opening their doors depends on the will of the viewers to buy tickets. It seems the New York movie goers have responded with a level of confidence, that it is safe to go back watching movies on the big screen.
Regarding Broadway, a plan to reopen is in the work, where the audience would need to be tested negative before entering the theater. Because a Broadway show requires
teams of actors and technicians, opening a show with reduced capacity does not make financial sense.
In spite of all the obstacles still on the road to going back to normal, the Big Apple is hoping its entertainment industry will resume full speed in 2021.