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How 'Backstrom's Debut Will Impact Fox's TV Season
- Fox debuted its new drama "Backstrom" this week to so-so ratings.
- While the series improved on the numbers its predecessor did during its 2014 debut, it did so against weak competition.
- Even if "Backstrom" flops, the success of Gotham and Empire gives Fox two major hits that will help them with advertisers come the upfronts.
Fox's 'Taken 3' Crushes Skeptics With Strong Opening Week EarningsThe Entertainment Oracle • Sun, Jan. 11
- "Taken 3" dominated the box office despite skeptics believing the franchise had overstayed its welcome.
- "Taken 3's" three-day total gives the film the second best opening for a January release behind 2014's "Ride Along".
- As a company, Fox had a good week with successes in its TV division (with "Empire") and film division (with "Taken 3").
Box Office Hoping Fox's 'Taken 3' And Liam Neeson's Special Set Of Skills Can Keep Up January MomentumThe Entertainment Oracle • Sat, Jan. 10
- "Taken 3" is the latest and final installment in the insanely profitable franchise starring Liam Neeson.
- The movie plays to the strength of its lead actor by keeping a PG-13 rating and coming out in the winter timeframe.
- "Taken 3" is expected to win the weekend but could see some competition from critical favorite "Selma", which is expanding into more theaters.
'Empire' Hits Much-Needed High Note For Fox, Following Rough Fall TV Season
- "Empire" was Fox's first big project of 2015 to see air, following a sub-par fall season.
- It debuted to a new ratings high not seen by Fox since 2012, and matched ABC's "How To Get Away With Murder" strong season-leading demo rating.
- Fox has a number of projects still queue that it hopes can benefit off of Empire's momentum.
Fox Uses Strong Summer Hits And Multiple Literary Adaptations To Succeed In 2014The Entertainment Oracle • Mon, Jan. 5
- Fox had a banner 2014 thanks to a string of summer success stories that resulted in solid worldwide profits.
- The biggest win for Fox was its trio of literary adaptations, which took in nearly a $1 billion worldwide.
- 2015's slate doesn't carry the same guarantees due to a more uncertain group of summer films, but its first quarter looks especially strong.
FX Looks To Continue Being A Major Part Of Fox's Success In 2015 Despite End Of 'Sons Of Anarchy'The Entertainment Oracle • Dec. 17, 2014
- FX launched itself into the cable TV conversation courtesy of ‘there is no box’ type shows like ‘The Shield’ and ‘Nip/Tuck’.
- Series like ‘Sons of Anarchy’ and ‘American Horror Story’ continued the network’s strong presence with viewers and pull with advertisers.
- Even with ‘Sons of Anarchy’ exiting, the network has a strong support system to keep ratings high with promising new prospects.
- FX fits in nicely with Fox’s other major subsidiaries including its broadcast TV channel and film studio.
Fox Looks To Rise To Top Of The Box Office With 'Exodus: Gods And Kings'The Entertainment Oracle • Dec. 13, 2014
- Fox’s ‘Exodus: Gods and Kings’ is expected to knock ‘The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1’ from the top spot at the box office this weekend.
- The movie is projected to do between $25 million and $30 million in business, but that would still put it behind other recent religious based films like ‘Noah’.
- ‘Exodus’ got an early jump with the international market last weekend and earned a strong total from just a few key markets which gives its studio hope for this weekend.
Fox Posts Revenue Growth Amid Slowdown In Growth Of Advertising SpendingLucrative Advice • Nov. 28, 2014
- Fox reported an 11.7% increase in the revenues of the network operator, which came in at $7.887 billion.
- Net income attributable to stockholders was $1.037 billion; a 17% year on year increase.
- It is believed that the lower ratings received for shows being run on the cable network have contributed to a 5% decline in the advertising income for the media company.
- While Magna Global has projected US ad growth at 3.3% next year, it has lowered its forecast for TV ad revenue growth for the next year from 3.8% to 2.3%.
- Share prices have declined nearly 4% in their value year to date. Investors should wait until the direction of Fox is a little clearer before they invest in these stocks.
- 21st Century Fox shares have traded firmly in the low- to mid-$30s for most of the year. Do shares expect to remain stagnant?
- Rupert Murdoch, at the helm of the corporation, aims to augment a disappointing quarter.
- We will attempt to address 21st Century Fox’s near- and long-term prospects by taking a brief look at its business and performing an easy-to-follow SWOT analysis.
Fox: 'Book Of Life' Looking To Take Pages Out Of 'Maze Runner', 'Gone Girl' And Other Recent Studio Success StoriesThe Entertainment Oracle • Oct. 18, 2014
- Fox has been on a box office role lately with its successful film adaptations of "The Maze Runner' and "Gone Girl."
- "The Book Of Life" will play well with families and the Hispanic demographic as a result of its Day of the Dead roots.
- Fox’s TV divisions are also doing well, thanks to the success of "American Horror Story" and 'Gotham."
Twenty-First Century Fox: Major Media Is Still A Major Buy?
- FOXA has underperformed its major peers of late.
- Mainly because a number of investors were disappointed by the failed bid for TWX.
- But FOXA still appear to be one of the most compelling investments in big media..
Fox: FX's 'American Horror Story' Breaks Records And Solidifies Network's FutureThe Entertainment Oracle • Oct. 15, 2014
- 'American Horror Story' has consistently been one of FX's strongest series with both critics and viewers.
- The anthology's latest installment 'Freak Show' debuted to record numbers, making its premiere the most watched single-episode in FX's history.
- The continued success of 'American Horror Story' comes at an ideal time as FX is preparing to lose two of its most well-known programs.
Fox: Studio Looking To Keep Momentum Going With David Fincher's 'Gone Girl'The Entertainment Oracle • Oct. 3, 2014
- ‘Gone Girl’ is the latest film adaptation of a popular book to open with solid buzz.
- Fox recently saw success with ‘The Maze Runner’ and while ‘Gone Girl’ targets a different demo, the studio can still use a similar road map.
- The box office may have shown signs of life in recent weeks, but still is expected to close the year significantly lower than last year.
- Fox has had a strong fall on TV thanks to shows like ‘Gotham’ and ‘Sons of Anarchy.’.
Fox: FX's 'The Strain' And FXX's 'Simpsons' Acquisition Combine With Return Of '24' To Give TV Division Strong Summer
- Both of Fox’s film and TV divisions had a strong summer but its TV division has a few more bumps to overcome.
- Cable networks FX and FXX had a easier time than Fox’s broadcast network but all three had success.
- FXX is the big winner among all three networks as a result of its acquisition of The Simpsons and subsequent mega marathon ratings.
- Fox has an increasing sense of urgency to replace its fading American Idol.
- Its new reality series 'Utopia' is a big step towards reinvigorating its TV segment.
- If it is a hit, there will be a significant secondary revenue stream from those wanting to watch every detail of the series when they want.
- 'The Simpsons' is one of TV's most iconic series of all time.
- After 25 years the series is finally coming to cable through a syndication deal with FXX that includes multiple viewing options.
- FXX is a part of Fox, which through the broadcast channel and FX cable network is already a powerful force...but FXX has gotten off to a rocky start.
- FXX spent a record amount of money on the well-known brand in a bid to get more people to tune into the network and stay tuned in afterwords.
- This new model is potentially setting the groundwork for future deals taking place in an increasingly crowded online medium.
Twenty-First Century Fox And Why It's Been VolatileGary Bourgeault • Aug. 15, 2014
- Broadcast TV remains the biggest challenge for FOXA, as American Idol continues to slip.
- Cable and film continue to be robust, led by affiliate and retransmission fees pricing power, and good film choices.
- 2016 could be a huge break-out year, with political spend soaring and Avatar 2 to be released.
Fox: Studio Hoping 'Let's Be Cops' Mimics Success Of 'Neighbors,' '22 Jump Street'The Entertainment Oracle • Aug. 13, 2014
- Following a successful summer Fox looks to end the season on a high note with 'Let's Be Cops'.
- Despite a trend of adult comedies like 'Neighbors' and '22 Jump Street' doing well, the failure of 'Sex Tape' doesn't bode well for 'Let's Be Cops'' box office chances.
- Fox's film division has a strong fall roster and its TV channels (Fox and FX) each have highly anticipated programming coming soon that could help boost overall investor confidence.
- Twenty-First Century Fox reluctantly admitted defeat in its campaign to acquire Time Warner.
- This move by management sheds light on the company's earlier decision to divest certain assets.
- Despite the fact the company is now without a partner in an era of consolidation, the company's share buyback plan has a chance of creating shareholder value.
- 21st Century Fox reported fourth quarter revenue growth of 17% to $8.42 billion and net income of $999 million compared to -$371 million in 4Q2013.
- The Filmed Entertainment segment was the biggest driver of revenue growth with a 38% year-over-year increase to $2.8 billion.
- My original article outlined how the strength in Fox's movie studio this quarter and continuing through the rest of 2014 would drive revenue growth for the company.
Wed, Jan. 21, 1:00 PM
- Dish Networks (DISH -0.2%) won a significant court battle in L.A. against Fox Broadcasting over the company's Dish Anywhere app.
- The ruling from a federal judge applied some of the principles from the Supreme Court's look at the Aereo case.
- The opinion from the court indicated that watching content on mobile devices and tablets through Dish Anywhere doesn't qualify as a breach of copyright law.
- The use of Dish's PrimeTime Anytime and AutoHop features were also deemed as fair use.
- Many programmers seemed to have anticipated the legal decision and already negotiated with Dish to disable ad-skipping for a period of time after a show airs.
- The ruling is sure to have been noticed on Madison Avenue where the largest (and smarter?) ad spenders continue to increase digital spending over broadcast/cable TV buys.
- Big advertisers: MCD, PG, BUD, WMT, TGT, K, GIS, TM, GM.
- Programmers: CBS, TWX, FOXA, SNI, AMCX, VIA , VIAB, DISCA.
Fri, Jan. 16, 2:18 AM
- Ending a three-week fight, Dish Network (NASDAQ:DISH) has reached a new multiyear distribution agreement with Fox News (NASDAQ:FOXA) and is putting the 14M subscriber channel back on its satellite-TV service.
- Terms of the deal weren’t disclosed, however, people familiar with the talks said Dish is paying a significant increase for the channel. The Fox Business Network has been restored as well.
- FOXA +0.4 AH
Thu, Jan. 15, 12:40 PM
- Barry Diller says there's no stretch left on pay-TV pricing as he dissects the influence of Amazon Prime (NASDAQ:AMZN) in the industry.
- He warns on the Prime model where adding subscribers for the company dwarfs concerns on viewership and advertising.
- By the sound of it, Diller isn't recommended staying long cable stocks (CMCSA, TWC, CHTR, CVC) or positive on programmers (SNI, CBS, AMCX, FOXA, VIA, VIAB, MSG, DIS) set to renegotiate carriage deals.
- CNBC interview (video)
- Previously: Woody Allen to direct series for Amazon Studios (Jan. 13)
- Previously: Amazon added over 10M new Prime users during holiday season (Dec. 26, 2014)
Wed, Jan. 14, 1:04 PM
- The first of three sequels to Avatar won't start hitting theaters for 20th Century Fox (NASDAQ:FOXA) until late in 2017, almost a year later than originally forecast.
- Director James Cameron has a little bit of clout with the studio after delivering a global gross of $2.788B for the original to make it the top box office movie in history (non-inflation adjusted).
- "We’re not coming out of the block fast to capitalize on the last film," says the relaxed movie maker.
- Most estimates on parent 21st Century Fox were light on banking that Cameron would hit the 2016 target release date.
- If everything goes to schedule from here, the three films will be released in December 2017, December 2018, and December 2019.
Tue, Jan. 13, 12:03 PM
Mon, Jan. 5, 10:25 AM
- Dish Networks (DISH -0.6%) replaces Fox News on its programming schedule with TheBlaze featuring Glenn Beck.
- Prior to the Dish addition, TheBlaze was in less than half of the major TV markets.
- Dish is in an extended carriage fee battle with 21st Century Fox (FOXA -1%).
- The ego clash of media titans Rupert Murdoch and Charlie Ergen could lead to a long blackout of Fox News on Dish, predict some media analysts.
Fri, Jan. 2, 11:54 AM
- 2014 saw a mixed performance for movie studios (LGF, CMCSA, TWX, DIS, SNI, VIA, VIAB, FOXA, DIS).
- U.S. box office -5.2% Y/Y to $10.3B. Higher ticket prices and improved in-theater spending helped offset low traffic.
- China box office +36% Y/Y to $4.77B Though the number of foreign films are capped by the government, the box office winner in the nation in 2014 was Paramount's Transformers: Age of Extinction. Local productions accounted for 54% of the tally. IMAX (NYSE:IMAX) had a big year.
- U.K. box office -5% to $1.73b. The Lego Movie from Warner Bros. topped the chart.
- France box office +8% to $4.77B.
- Japan +5.9% led by a stellar $249M from Disney's Frozen.
Dec. 31, 2014, 8:42 AM
- Streaming: Sony (NYSE:SNE), HBO (NYSE:TWX), CBS (NYSE:CBS), and Dish Networks (NASDAQ:DISH) are set to unveil streaming products in 2015. The theory of the companies that the skinny bundles will draw in more cord-cutters and cord-nevers than they will cannibalize current pay-TV subscribers will be put to the test. The rush of streaming options could help or hurt Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) depending upon which analysis an investor leans on.
- Theater traffic rebound: Exhibitors (CNK, RGC, AMC, CKEC, IMAX) and movie studios (LGF, VIA, VIAB, DIS, FOXA, CMCSA, TWX) maintain that the decline in theater attendance in 2014 (-6%) was due to a slate of films light on blockbusters. A bounce is forecast for 2015 with high-profile films such as Avengers: The Age of Ultron, The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2, Fifty Shades of Grey, Jurassic World, Spectre (James Bond), and Mission Impossible 5 all set to premiere - along with the reboot of the Star Wars franchise in December. Capex spending on theater upgrades could also help boost in-theater spending and average ticket price for exhibitors.
- Mergers: If regulators allow the Comcast-Time Warner Cable (NYSE:TWC) and AT&T-DirecTV (NASDAQ:DTV) mergers to sail through it could clear a path for other media combinations, note analysts. Potential buyers include Alibaba (NYSE:BABA), Wanda Group, Softbank (OTCPK:SFTBY), and a TWX-rebuffed 21st Century Fox (NASDAQ:FOXA). Content producers which could be targets include Starz (NASDAQ:STRZA), Lions Gate (NYSE:LGF), DreamWorks Animation (NASDAQ:DWA), AMC Networks (NASDAQ:AMCX), and Scripps Networks (NYSE:SNI). A split-up Madison Square Garden (NASDAQ:MSG) could also be enticing.
Dec. 30, 2014, 10:26 AM
- U.S movie admissions are down 6% to 1.259B this year to mark the lowest level of movie attendance since 1995.
- An increase in average ticket prices on the push to premium seating helped offset the decline in traffic.
- 20th Century Fox (NASDAQ:FOXA) raked in $1.738B (+66% Y/Y) on 22 movies tracked to rank first of the studios.
- X-Men Days of Future Past and Dawn of the Planet of the Apes both topped $200M.
Dec. 24, 2014, 8:10 AM
- Media analysts expect an announcement shortly from Sony Pictures (NYSE:SNE) on how it plans to distribute The Interview online.
- The options for the movie studio are plentiful - including using a powerhouse tech outlet such as Google (via Google Play or YouTube), Apple, or Netflix.
- Sony-owned Crackle is also an option as is a deal with a pay-TV operator.
- What to watch: A successful online launch of the film could have some wider implications for movie studios (LGF, VIAB, VIA, TWX, DIS, FOXA) and theater chains (RGC, CKEC, AMC, CNK) with the industry's mainstream distribution model showing some signs of cracking.
Dec. 19, 2014, 12:42 PM
- DirecTV (DTV +0.1%) says subscribers will have access to the TV Everywhere offerings from Fox Networks (NASDAQ:FOXA).
- Beginning in January, DirecTV Everywhere will also include VOD content from Fox.
- DirecTV's strategy to offer streaming services from within the TV Everywhere platform differs from satellite rival Dish Network which is going with an OTT product.
Dec. 17, 2014, 7:57 AM
Dec. 16, 2014, 1:23 PM
- A new company formed through a partnership between Tribune Media (OTCPK:TRBAA), Spanish-language Univision, and Fox Television Stations (NASDAQ:FOXA) plans to measure local ratings of content across both digital and TV channels.
- NewCoin will begin the initiative with a test run in Dallas.
- Nielsen (NYSE:NLSN) and Rentrak (NASDAQ:RENT) are leaders in the TV/digital ratings business.
Dec. 12, 2014, 12:13 PM
- Time Warner (NYSE:TX) CEO Jeffrey Bewkes speculated on the potential for a mega-merger in the media industry yesterday during a discussion at a conference sponsored by Dealbook.
- The exec mentioned CBS (NYSE:CBS) and Viacom (VIA, VIAB) as two companies that might like to combine within the sector.
- Time Warner remains very much in the M&A discussion after spurning an $85-per-share offer from 21st Century Fox (NASDAQ:FOXA) earlier this year.
- "I don’t want to talk about it," says Bewkes after already pointing to the elephant in the room.
Dec. 11, 2014, 2:28 PM
- Nielsen reports that so-called digitals, what the company calls consumers aged between 12 and 24, saw 7.1 movies in theaters this year - compared to the 8.4 movies the group saw the previous year.
- Moviegoers between the ages of 25 and 44 increased the number of theater trips this year to 8.1 from 7.7 in 2013.
- No great surprise, but digitals increased the amount of content they streamed this year, including more full-length movies.
- Perhaps of interest to studios (LGF, SNE, CMCSA, TWX, FOXA, DIS), a majority of digitals say they trust trailers and the opinions of friends over movie commercials aired on TV.
- Full Nielsen report
- Theater stocks: CKEC, AMC, CNK, RLD, IMAX, RDI, MCS.
Dec. 11, 2014, 7:21 AM| Comment!
FOXA vs. ETF Alternatives
Twenty-First Century Fox Inc is a diversified media and entertainment company. It operates in five business segments: Cable Network Programming, Television, Filmed Entertainment, Direct Broadcast Satellite Television, and Other Corporate and Eliminations.
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