Toronto studio operators talk Hollywood spending strategies and streaming wars – The Hollywood Reporter



Never mind Netflix’s stumble. Hollywood’s streaming movie and TV content spending shows no signs of slowing down.

That’s the word from Toronto studio operators, who, led by their city’s mayor, John Tory, recently traveled to Los Angeles on a trade mission to get major studios and streamers to shoot originals. exclusive to their Canadian stages.

“They are not talking about reducing. They talk about their optimism and how they want to come to Toronto,” Tory said. The Hollywood Reporter. He added that Hollywood media players welcome the opening of more studio space in the Canadian city and want even more gains in training the local workforce, especially for greater diversity. and inclusion.

Tory added that Netflix executives, in discussions with the streaming giant, gave no indication of any tightening of the belt, especially after opening a Canadian office in Toronto and taking long-term leases on a local studio. for the production of originals.

Other mission participants also see Los Angeles players like Disney, Warner Bros., Amazon, Paramount, Apple and AMC Networks continue to chase Toronto scenes amid Hollywood’s streaming wars to meet demand. growing subscribers for original content.

David Hardy, vice president, industry and government relations at William F. White International, the Toronto-based studio operator and production equipment rental giant, said he’s heard a few rumors about budgets tight for bigger budget TV shoots.

“The paradox is that this type of production, the 12- to 15-day shoots for an hour of television, just keeps coming, so the scope and scale of the productions is high,” Hardy said. THR from the Warner Bros. lot. as the Canuck mission met with local production officials.

Hardy predicted that product spending for studios and streamers will likely increase, as it has in recent years, to meet a seemingly insatiable consumer demand for exclusive content.

Other Canadian executives on the Hollywood trade mission agree that current content production budgets will remain intact, even though studio heads on recent post-earnings analyst calls have talked about not overspending to attract subscribers. and win the streaming wars.

Ashley Rice, recently named president and co-directing associate of Cinespace Studios, which has studio campuses in Chicago and Toronto, says the streaming landscape has changed to the point where Netflix and other early and established players direct to consumers no longer have the field to themselves.

“It’s become so much more competitive. There are many [streaming] options. So now they have to re-examine their business to be as competitive as necessary in an ever-changing marketplace,” Rice said from Los Angeles.

She added that Toronto’s advantage is stability, being able to offer Hollywood gamers premium sound stages, rising talent and production crews, and tax and incentive credits. other incentives.

“The scale and reach of TV and film is only increasing due to the competitive landscape, so they need to go to a jurisdiction that has support systems in place to focus on film and film. ‘art,” Rice said of Toronto.

“It’s a place of trust and it’s also industry friendly at a time when the world is uncertain and talent is interested and comfortable moving to Toronto,” she said. added.

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