Lisa's Feed
Jun 30, 2013

Sony suffers second box office letdown as it eyes partial spinoff

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Sony, which is studying a partial spinoff of its studio at the urging of major shareholder Daniel Loeb, suffered its second box office misfire of the summer season when its action movie “White House Down” opened with ticket sales below industry forecasts.

“White House Down,” which stars Jamie Foxx as the U.S. president and Channing Tatum as a federal agent who saves the White House from terrorists, opened with $25.7 million in domestic ticket sales, according to the studio, below industry experts’ estimates of over $30 million.

Jun 30, 2013

‘Monsters’ tops female cop comedy ‘The Heat’ at box office

By Lisa Richwine and Chris Michaud

(Reuters) – Animated prequel “Monsters University” took home its second U.S. and Canadian box office title with $46.2 million in ticket sales over the weekend, fending off a red-hot debut from Sandra Bullock and Melissa McCarthy in female buddy comedy “The Heat.”

Outpacing industry projections, “The Heat” nabbed $40 million from Friday through Sunday and finished in second place, according to studio estimates. Big-budget, explosion-filled “White House Down” fell short of expectations with $25.7 million in its first three days, finishing the weekend in fourth place.

Jun 27, 2013

In search for effective ads, U.S. TV operators mine viewer data

By Liana B. Baker and Lisa Richwine

(Reuters) – U.S. cable companies and satellite TV providers, locked in battle with broadcasters and online sites for advertising, are taking a page from Google by using data on their subscribers’ tastes to serve up tailored commercials.

In Los Angeles, a 35-year-old female DirecTV subscriber with a cat might get a spot promoting cat food while the satellite provider would beam a car advertisement to her next door neighbor, a bachelor watching the same channel.

Jun 17, 2013

Netflix boosts original programming with DreamWorks deal

June 17 (Reuters) – Video streaming service Netflix Inc
signed an exclusive multiyear deal for a slate of new
TV series from “Shrek” creator DreamWorks Animation,
deepening its push into original programming to stand apart from
Internet competitors.

Netflix shares rose 7 percent and DreamWorks Animation
shares jumped 4 percent after the deal was announced on Monday.

Jun 13, 2013

Fox, NBC secure ad rate hikes for fall shows: sources

By Liana B. Baker and Lisa Richwine

(Reuters) – U.S. broadcast networks Fox and NBC are close to wrapping up their advance sales for commercial time for the upcoming fall season and have narrowly beaten analysts’ expectations with rate increases of as much as 7 percent over last year, sources familiar with the negotiations said on Wednesday.

News Corp-owned Fox won a 5 percent to 7 percent increase from advertisers despite a drop in overall viewership, one source told Reuters.

Jun 12, 2013

Fox, NBC report ad rate hikes for fall shows

June 12 (Reuters) – U.S. broadcast networks Fox and NBC are
close to wrapping up their advance sales for commercial time for
the upcoming fall season and have narrowly beaten analysts’
expectations with rate increases of as much as 7 percent over
last year, sources familiar with the negotiations said on
Wednesday.

News Corp-owned Fox won a 5 percent to 7 percent
increase from advertisers despite a drop in overall viewership,
one source told Reuters.

Jun 12, 2013

Disney’s ESPN to close U.S. 3D cable TV network this year

June 12 (Reuters) – Walt Disney Co’s TV sports network, ESPN, said it will shut its 3D cable channel in the United States, ending a three-year experiment after sports fans failed to embrace the technology in their homes.

ESPN launched the 3D cable channel in 2010 and will close the channel by the end of the year, said ESPN spokeswoman Katina Arnold. It presented 3D broadcasts of college football games and the Masters golf tournament, among other offerings.

Jun 11, 2013

Analysis: Disney goes to Infinity to turn around gaming unit

By Lisa Richwine and Malathi Nayak

(Reuters) – When Walt Disney Co introduced its latest video game, Infinity, to the gaming faithful this week at the annual E3 gaming conference, it rented a Los Angeles movie theater to show 30-minute clips of upcoming films and hosted a party with the glitz it usually reserves for its blockbuster movie wannabes.

It shows just how much the company is counting on Infinity – whose players can for the first time mix together characters from Disney’s different franchises – to help turn around one part of the media giant that stubbornly refuses to turn a profit.

Jun 11, 2013

Disney goes to Infinity to turn around gaming unit

June 11 (Reuters) – When Walt Disney Co (DIS.N: Quote, Profile, Research) introduced
its latest video game, Infinity, to the gaming faithful this
week at the annual E3 gaming conference, it rented a Los Angeles
movie theater to show 30-minute clips of upcoming films and
hosted a party with the glitz it usually reserves for its
blockbuster movie wannabes.

It shows just how much the company is counting on Infinity -
whose players can for the first time mix together characters
from Disney’s different franchises – to help turn around one
part of the media giant that stubbornly refuses to turn a
profit.

Jun 4, 2013

Disney hikes prices at U.S. theme parks

By Lisa Richwine

(Reuters) – Walt Disney Co raised single-day admission prices as much as 6.7 percent over the weekend at its theme parks in Florida and California, hikes that are more than five times the rate of inflation.

Higher prices for Disney’s theme parks have become an annual tradition. The theme parks and resorts unit provided 20 percent of the company’s overall profits in the financial year that ended in September 2012, second only to the company’s media unit that includes the behemoth sports channel ESPN.