Film production will remain high, and television assets will be sold

If Sony and Apollo stick their hooks into Paramount Global, their strategy will be to keep theatrical release production steady between both studios — not reduce it — while cutting the most onerous parts of the conglomerate, the auction-reading on CBS, and linear channels like MTV and the Paramount Plus streaming service.

News about the theatrical production is in tonight’s Deadline, instead The New York Times It was reported earlier that Sony and Apollo had plans to dilute Paramount Television assets in their $26 billion bid for the entertainment company. for every The New York Times, Sony did not share its plan with Paramount and its advisors, who decided on May 4 to hold separate talks with Sony/Apollo and continue negotiations with David Ellison’s Skydance/Red Bird. Talks between Paramount and Skydance have cooled, although the latter remains interested.

Many have pointed out that Sony’s merger with Paramount would put the former under scrutiny with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) as foreign-owned conglomerates are not allowed to own US broadcast stations.

According to Deadline’s sources, Hollywood exhibitors are fearful of the Sony-Paramount merger, with many suffering from PTSD as a result of the 2019 Disney-Fox merger and the resulting drop in film production: Across 20th Century Studios, Searchlight, and Disney, there are only 12 films . Titles for 2024. With wide releases (pictures playing north of 1,000 theaters) of about 83 titles this year for the entire industry, the show can’t afford another loss to a major studio. This means roughly ten more big titles disappearing from the market. Circuits have already been canceled due to subsequent strikes and Covid.

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Big Sony is putting out 15 films this year and Paramount is putting out ten more. Sources told Deadline that the plan would not be to downsize the Sony-Paramount merger, but rather to compete with streaming companies; This vision is about 20 wide releases per year. They will not follow in the footsteps of Disney Fox’s practices. At least that’s the plan now. This is the main reason why Sony went after Paramount to create a studio equation of 1 + 1 = 4. Last year, Paramount and Sony respectively made $2 billion at the global box office. If combined, their output would equal $4 billion with Universal’s global ($4.9 billion) and Disney’s ($4.8 billion worldwide) results.

Meanwhile, according to the New York Times, neither Sony nor Paramount have signed formal non-disclosure agreements or begun any book-breaking, a formality that could take weeks. Sony Paramount will see the former Culver City group operate the combined entity as a joint venture with Apollo taking a minority stake that could be sold in the future to Sony or another buyer. Marketing and distribution operations will be integrated.

Some people close to Paramount believe there is a third option, which is that Shari Redstone will go it alone, and not make a deal with Sony/Apollo or SkyDance. How long this will last remains the question.

Sony is known as a content arms dealer, licensing movies and TV shows to Netflix and Disney. The studio has a rich one-pay deal with Netflix. That strategy will remain unchanged with the addition of Paramount, which is the idea that Melrose Ave’s OTT service will be offloaded to Comcast’s Peacock or Warner Bros Discovery’s Max.

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The Sony Apollo deal requires approval from the Justice Department’s Antitrust Division, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). The current President Biden’s administration is known to be anti-merger, especially horizontal merger where jobs could be lost.

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