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Many exhibitors, forced to close due to the coronavirus pandemic, have begun turning to digital options.
With the novel coronavirus pandemic having seen cinemas close around the world and distributors now scrapping the theatrical windows on a growing number of titles, many exhibitors have looked to digital options in order to keep their businesses flowing.
With this in mind, a new partnership between ScreenPlus and Vista Group will enable exhibitors that haven't already done so to launch their own personalized VOD platforms and offer films directly to their customers for at-home streaming.
The partnership will launch ScreenPlus' VOD solution in every major territory, promoted by Vista Group, whose software and technology solutions currently service more than 50 percent of cinema chains worldwide, including Cineworld and Regal, Landmark, Odeon, Curzon and Vue.
"The cinemas have lost out as a result of the current COVID-19 crisis, but this will potentially generate additional revenue and retain the relationships exhibitors have with their customers," said ScreenPlus director John Barnett.
“We have been working withShift72 to bring the ScreenPlus solution to our exhibition customers for some time," said Vista Group founder and chief product officer Murray Holdaway. "The outbreak of COVID-19 has seen us accelerate the release of the product to the exhibition market."
ScreenPlus has recently worked with SXSW, offering a secure platform for press and industry to view this year's entries, as well as the CPH:DOX Festival, which went virtual last month using the ScreenPlus technology. Shift72 has also powered markets for several years, including Cannes' Marché du Film, SXSW Film Festival and the AFM.
Source: Hollywood Reporter
Before heading to Sunday night’s SAG Awards ceremony, nominees Jennifer Aniston and Billy Crudup joined their “Morning Show” cast/executive producer Reese Witherspoon, executive producer Michael Ellenberg, and EP/director Mimi Leder to discuss the show that launched Apple TV+.
One thing they were not prepared to talk about, however, was what’s next — aka Season 2.
“It was a climactic finale,” Ellenberg said early in the panel. “Season 2 certainly picks up where we ended… and you'll have to watch it to see.”
“We’re just getting started,” Witherspoon said. “We’re trying to figure out the new dynamics [post-#MeToo] — what is the new normal?”
Ellenberg also said they’re still “exploring” Steve Carell’s contract for Season 2. The actor, who played a prominent supporting role in Season 1, was only signed for one season, and the finale indicated that might be it for his character. But showrunner Kerry Ehrin, who couldn’t attend the panel because of a bad case of bronchitis, previously said they were hoping to bring Carell back for the second season.
“No update yet,” Ellenberg said.
That kept the focus on the controversial, oft-criticized elements of Season 1 and the statements made during its rollout — including the sentimental focus provided Carell’s character, Mitch Kessler, who’s fired for sexual harassment during the show’s opening episode. The team onstage was asked about why a show made by women and meant to discuss the #MeToo movement from women’s perspectives would repeatedly take pity on a sexual predator.
“It was important to get inside the head of a gentle, charismatic narcissist,” Aniston said. “[It was important] to be at the hand of abuse of power and not actually even know it. We wanted that perspective of that character to be explored.”
“We explored racism, sexism, homophobia — all the things that are currently happening in news media and particularly broadcast media,” Witherspoon said, pointing out that “The Morning Show” tackled far more than one issue.
Another problem that came up during the panel was Gugu Mbatha-Raw’s character, Hannah Shoenfeld, who was a young producer as well as one of Mitch’s victims. TCA member and NPR critic Eric Deggans asked about how the series plays into onscreen stereotypes about the victimization of black women and what drove the creators to cast one of the few African American actors in the role.
“That character was written as a character,...
Network president Susan Zirinsky thanked executive producer Chris Licht and 'the Colbert crew.'
Last Wednesday, CBS News president Susan Zirinsky announced the temporary closure and cleaning of two network buildings in New York City due to an outbreak of the novel coronavirus. But, she said that she expected both buildings to re-open on Monday of this week.
In a new memo on Wednesday morning, however, Zirinsky told staffers that the buildings will not be opening.
"We all have to make daily adjustments to our lives during this health crisis," she wrote. "In an abundance of caution, ViacomCBS is temporarily moving operations out of the Broadcast Center/555 Building and diversifying locations. This applies to all CBS divisions, including Sports, WCBS TV, COE operations and, of course, CBS News."
Starting Thursday, the network's morning show — CBS This Morning — will now broadcast from The Ed Sullivan Theater, home of The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.
Zirinsky thanked Late Show executive producer Chris Licht "and the Colbert crew who will be handling all technical operations out of the Ed Sullivan Theater."
She also provided an update on the six CBS News employees who have tested positive for the virus.
"Many of you have asked about our colleagues who are sick," Zirinsky wrote. "We're all deeply concerned about those who have contracted COVID-19 and thinking of them as they recover. We have not had any confirmed cases beyond what we shared on Monday, although we await the results of a few more tests."
Speaking broadly about the network's coverage of the outbreak, she said, "There has never been a bigger story impacting every community in our country and across the globe in our lifetime. It touches everyone. Covering the pandemic every day - every development - with the right tone, context and comprehensive, fact-based reporting — this is our critical mission. You are rising to this challenge, day and night. Thank you to your commitment to the public. Thank you for your sensitivity to the story and to each other during these times."
Source: Hollywood Reporter