Mega Serious Challenges to The Big Picture Hollywood Faces an Existential Threat from an Army of New Ruthless Competitors!

The good news for Hollywood is that the dreaded Covid-19 pandemic appears to be receding from several parts of the world including America which is why movie theatres in America were reopened in May 2021. A bunch of movies from different genres has been released by American movie studios since May 2021 and a lot of them have done reasonably good business both domestically and at the international box office. The bad news for Hollywood is that these good times may not last for long. There is tremendous competition for viewers’ eyeballs and money right now because watching movies on the big screen in theatres is not the only entertainment option for both Americans and other people around the globe today. There are many exciting options for people today if they want to spend some time getting entertained and having fun. Gone are the days when everybody’s idea of a good time was watching a movie with family and friends or as a couple or just alone. Now there are multiple options for every person to spend their limited financial resources and time when they want to have fun and a good time. Hollywood is facing a big threat to its existence and struggling to appeal to people like it did in the last many decades.

 

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The Sun is Shining Even Brighter on TV!


TV was always a competition to movies and now there is practically an unlimited number of TV channels showing programs and providing entertainment that Hollywood can never provide. Remember Hollywood only makes feature films. On TV viewers can see TV series, game shows, music, documentaries, reality TV shows, news shows, festival specials, and any other kinds of programs. Now there are thousands of mainstream and niche channels that cover almost every aspect of entertainment and information that any viewer can desire. The number of TV channels is increasing every year as more and more areas of America get covered by the TV industry.

An Alternative That is Now Threatening to Become Mainstream!

 

 

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OTT platforms have changed the entertainment landscape for Americans and the rest of the world forever. OTT stands for “Over-The-Top” and the content can be streamed on computers, tablets, smartphones, and other OTT devices and can be viewed from anywhere and at any time. That’s one of the greatest USPs of the OTT platform technology and its delivery system. People can watch content at their convenience at any time of their choosing and any location without having to adjust to the timings of regular TV content and of course, they don’t have to go to the theatres. With OTT giants such as Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Disney+, Hulu, Pluto TV, CuriosityStream, Peacock, Starz, and many more providing exciting innovative content that Hollywood can never deliver viewers are spoilt for choice. Why watch a hackneyed The Fast & the Furious – sequel number 43 – when the exciting and globally relevant web series Jack Ryan season 3 is available at one’s fingertips? Not only are these OTT platforms delivering high-quality web series that engage the viewers they are also making original movies that are hitting Hollywood just where it hurts.

 

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Gigantic Ambitions are Invading Hollywood’s Territory!

 

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Netflix in particular has taken things to the next level. They not only make original movies for their globally pervasive platform but are also making big-budget movies that are being released in theatres from day one. Case in point – the star-studded mafia drama The Irishman starring Robert De Niro, Al Pacino, Joe Pesci, and Harvey Keitel among others and directed by the greatest living director in Hollywood today, the auteur Martin Scorsese. Not only are Netflix feature films making a tidy profit at the box-office but are also cleaning up at the Oscars and other major award ceremonies. Wait a minute! Wasn’t that the exclusive preserve of Hollywood all these years? Not anymore! Upstarts like Netflix and HBO Max are setting a scorching pace in providing both the big screen and small screen entertainment and content and are giving all the Hollywood studios a run for their money. No wonder all the head honchos of all Hollywood studios are spending sleepless nights worrying about the future of their multi-billion dollar companies and businesses. To add to their misery a new breed of competitors in the form of Multichannel Video Programming Distributors [MVPDs] are clamoring for the viewers’ attention. Some of the big names in this fast-growing category are AT&T TV, YouTube TV, Hulu + Live TV, Sling TV, and FuboTV.

Social Media Has Now Become Its Own Separate World!

 

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Social media has grown so fast and is so popular that it has become a new form of entertainment all by itself. Spending time on Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, TikTok, Snapchat, Reddit, and What’s App has become an obsession and since people can send all kinds of data on them now instant entertainment is available to all instantly. To make matters worse for Hollywood all kinds of clips and even entire movies can now be downloaded and forwarded to each other which further takes the viewers away from mainstream entertainment that Hollywood provides. Why make the huge effort of going to the theatres when everyone can have fun and content right at home with one’s favorite drinks and snacks right next to them? Now with apps like Instagram Stories, there is even more content on social media than ever before. With innovation and new ideas flowing like a river in flood in America and even in other technology hubs more social media platforms and apps are sure to hit the viewers and further erode the hold that Hollywood has had on them for so long.

An Existential Threat from an Infinite Virtual Universe

 


Now there is a new entity on the block and even though these are early days it has the potential to bring a whole new paradigm to the way people spend their time. It’s called the “Metaverse” and it will change the way people communicate and explore new visions and may completely change the way people think. A Metaverse is a form or entity of the Internet part of Shared Virtual Reality, mostly as an advanced form of social media. It applies to not just the virtual worlds operated by social media companies but also the entire spectrum of Augmented Reality.


While the Metaverse started as a concept and this name was first coined in Neal Stephenson’s 1992 seminal science fiction novel named Snow Crash now it has become one of the biggest endeavours in the tech world. In the Metaverse, human beings as “Avatars” interact with each other and with software agents in a 3-D virtual space that uses the metaphor of the real living world. Tech companies like Facebook, Microsoft, Apple, Google, and many others are in a desperate race to crack this technology and be the first to introduce it in the market and commercialize it. The potential profits are beyond awesome.

 

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A Virtual Reality World That Will Overshadow the Real Living World!

 

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Facebook has stolen a march over everyone else as they rebranded their company as “Meta” and have declared that they will focus their efforts on making the concept of the Metaverse into a physical reality. Hollywood better watch out! If it has prided itself all these years that people flock to the theatres for new experiences that they have been providing then they will have to bitterly compete with the Metaverse when it becomes a reality. There is no way to predict what innovative new experiences the Metaverse will provide to people when they embrace this radical paradigm-shifting new technology and the consumer products that it will inevitably spawn. The Metaverse is among the biggest threats to Hollywood when it becomes a market reality.

 

Hollywood Simply Has to Reinvent Everything Immediately!

 

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So what is Hollywood going to do to protect its turf and maintain its place as the leading provider of entertainment to its consumers? Making fantastic movies consistently is a hygiene factor; Hollywood has to do it anyway. How will it overcome the challenges from all these powerful competitors who are working relentlessly to get increasingly bigger slices of the revenues generated by the entertainment universe? Hollywood has to provide superior viewing experiences by building better theatres, multiplexes, movies screens, watering holes, and providing movie lovers services that make them prefer watching movies on the big screen. The whole Hollywood ecosystem has to get together and come up with radical and innovative ideas to make the movie-watching experience a thrill for consumers that surpasses every other option that they have. If Hollywood wants movie lovers to keep watching The Big Picture they will have to work hard on the entertainment big picture!

 

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