September 23, 2021
In this week's edition:
• Lionsgate’s Kevin Beggs
• WorldScreenings: GoQuest Media
In the news
The Crown and The Queen's Gambit led the pack at this year’s Emmy Awards, taking home 11 wins each. The Apple TV+ comedy series Ted Lasso, which picked up seven Emmys, scored top honors at the 37th annual Television Critics Association Awards. Netflix entered into a film and TV partnership with Schitt’s Creek’s Dan Levy and acquired the Roald Dahl Story Company, home to iconic IP such as Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. A new report from Conviva found that word of mouth is the most frequent way consumers discover new content, ahead of advertising, social media and platform recommendations.
Lionsgate’s Kevin Beggs
By Anna Carugati
Lionsgate has always taken chances on new voices. It was among the first studios to embrace prestige TV and produce auteur-driven shows that draw viewers, subscribers and critical acclaim. Today, the studio prioritizes sister company STARZ’s needs while also providing content to some 20 other outlets. Kevin Beggs, chair of Lionsgate Television Group, has encouraged relationships with a diverse range of creators and showrunners who have helped cater to underserved audiences and bolster the bottom line.
WS: Comparing the media landscape during the first season of Mad Men or Weeds to today, what have been the biggest changes for Lionsgate Television?
BEGGS: As a nimble, agile company on the smaller end of the “big company” spectrum, we have to maneuver quickly and adapt to the market. We don’t make the market; we respond to it. In that respect, nothing has changed. We’re still a challenger brand. We still have a start-up mentality because if you become complacent, you’ll be boxed out of new business.
The other similarities are the continually emerging new platforms. This is where we found traction in the early 2000s, with new platforms like USA Network, AMC, Showtime, Lifetime, Turner and, at the time, ABC Family and then Freeform. All these newer entries were looking to do originals but couldn’t get the attention of either their in-house corporate studio partners or outside studios because the upside was modest compared to an outsized broadcast network hit.
Those early shows, like Mad Men, Breaking Bad and a slew of others that have come since, were auteur-driven, highly serialized, non-formulaic shows—the antithesis of a broadcast procedural. Back then, they were the outliers, but today they’re the mainstream because the conglomerates have become focused on streaming platforms.
This interview continues here.
WorldScreenings: GoQuest Media
In recent years, the international media industry has felt a marked shift across the landscape with the widespread adoption of digital platforms. Jimmy George, the VP of sales and acquisitions at GoQuest Media, attuned to the wants and needs of the market and the viewers therein, sees how developments in streaming services have created more demand and, consequently, a good time to be GoQuest.
“There’s more demand for original programming as more industry players have opportunities to take creative risks,” says George. He notes that there’s been a rise in established platforms expanding into new markets, the proliferation of new services and an increasing appetite for foreign-language content amid Covid-19.
This article continues here.
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