The Economic Crisis Comes to Hollywood

It was never going to just be the publishing industry and the auto industry and the banking industry.  Eventually, it had to come to the entertainment world.  What do I mean by “It”?  I mean the deflationary forces brought about by the internet combined with the pressures of a four year period of elevated unemployment levels.

Everybody gets a taste of this secular/cyclical beast sooner or later.

Now it’s Hollywood’s turn.  This op-ed at the New York Times detailing the invisible struggle going on in the film and TV biz is pretty intense…

Beyond the hype that culminates in the Academy Awards ceremony on Sunday, Hollywood is contracting, battered by the same economic forces reshaping the rest of the country. Moviegoing attendance hit a 16-year low last year. The industry is beset by rapidly changing business models: the free fall in DVD sales unmitigated by digital streaming, the independent film market that is a shadow of its former self. It all adds up to less. In Los Angeles, the number of television dramas produced last year dropped by 11.5 percent; reality shows were down 1.8 percent and sitcoms, 12.8 percent. On the feature side, the number of movies filmed here declined by an enormous 26.4 percent in the final quarter of last year.

What is less visible is the human toll of all that downsizing — the working actors, directors, writers and others like my foreclosed neighbors, trying to maintain their guild memberships, their health insurance, their mortgages. In the industry’s perverse social code, where appearances are everything, such private struggles are kept well hidden not only from public view but also within the industry itself. Failure is an affront to the accepted logic that, no matter what, Hollywood remains a lodestar of self-invention.

“People have no idea what’s going on in Hollywood now,” a prominent industry blogger told me recently when we met at what had been a favorite industry watering hole, empty that night. “There’s so little work, everyone is living off the money they made in the ’90s,” she added. “But they’re acting like nothing’s changed.”

Unfortunately, Hollywood is up against more than just a poor housing market – they are up against the segmentation that makes it nearly impossible to score an across-the-board hit movie or TV show.  They’re up against the fact that the 18-34 demo doesn’t watch commercials and we often have the TV on in the background while we surf the web on our tablets.

That’s not going to change even if the economy improves.


Tinseltown, Ghost Town (NYT)




This content, which contains security-related opinions and/or information, is provided for informational purposes only and should not be relied upon in any manner as professional advice, or an endorsement of any practices, products or services. There can be no guarantees or assurances that the views expressed here will be applicable for any particular facts or circumstances, and should not be relied upon in any manner. You should consult your own advisers as to legal, business, tax, and other related matters concerning any investment.

The commentary in this “post” (including any related blog, podcasts, videos, and social media) reflects the personal opinions, viewpoints, and analyses of the Ritholtz Wealth Management employees providing such comments, and should not be regarded the views of Ritholtz Wealth Management LLC. or its respective affiliates or as a description of advisory services provided by Ritholtz Wealth Management or performance returns of any Ritholtz Wealth Management Investments client.

References to any securities or digital assets, or performance data, are for illustrative purposes only and do not constitute an investment recommendation or offer to provide investment advisory services. Charts and graphs provided within are for informational purposes solely and should not be relied upon when making any investment decision. Past performance is not indicative of future results. The content speaks only as of the date indicated. Any projections, estimates, forecasts, targets, prospects, and/or opinions expressed in these materials are subject to change without notice and may differ or be contrary to opinions expressed by others.

Wealthcast Media, an affiliate of Ritholtz Wealth Management, receives payment from various entities for advertisements in affiliated podcasts, blogs and emails. Inclusion of such advertisements does not constitute or imply endorsement, sponsorship or recommendation thereof, or any affiliation therewith, by the Content Creator or by Ritholtz Wealth Management or any of its employees. Investments in securities involve the risk of loss. For additional advertisement disclaimers see here:

Please see disclosures here.

What's been said:

Discussions found on the web
  1. bitcoin era review 2020 commented on Sep 29

    … [Trackback]

    […] Read More here to that Topic: […]

  2. bitcoin loophole review commented on Sep 29

    … [Trackback]

    […] Find More on that Topic: […]

  3. commented on Oct 19

    … [Trackback]

    […] Find More Information here to that Topic: […]

  4. fake double omega watches commented on Oct 23

    … [Trackback]

    […] Find More here to that Topic: […]

  5. seven corners travel insurance commented on Oct 29

    … [Trackback]

    […] Find More here on that Topic: […]

  6. lace front wigs commented on Dec 17

    … [Trackback]

    […] Read More Information here on that Topic: […]

  7. rolex replica commented on Dec 21

    … [Trackback]

    […] Read More to that Topic: […]

  8. wigs for women commented on Dec 31

    … [Trackback]

    […] Find More Information here to that Topic: […]

  9. high quality rolex replicas commented on Jan 01

    … [Trackback]

    […] Here you will find 81492 additional Information on that Topic: […]

  10. manulife bank canada commented on Jan 14

    … [Trackback]

    […] Information on that Topic: […]