For a brief moment in time – in fact, it was just a tad less than 48 hours – Netflix became the biggest media company in the world, surpassing the juggernaut Walt Disney Company.
Still, Netflix has laid one heck of a footprint on the industry and pays talent accordingly. They have to in order to compete with studios/production companies because Netflix does not give a backend percentage to anybody given how secretive they usually are with how many streams they get, which means they have to pay a lot upfront to the talent.
And Edward Norton claims legendary director Steven Spielberg is wrong on a key issue involving Netflix.
Depending who you talk to there are a litany of reasons why people think Hollywood – movies and television – is being destroyed before our very eyes.
It’s loaded with too many liberals, the hypocrisy of preaching things like equal pay, the hypocrisy of preaching anti-Second Amendment while simultaneously making viciously violent gun films, too many sequels and reboots, rarely is a film original, etc. The list goes on and on.
One thing many old school filmmakers absolutely hate is Netflix. The main reason? It keeps people from going to the movie theater.
Earlier this year Steven Spielberg advocated for Netflix to be stripped of the main honors at the Academy Awards because movies that are specifically made for a streaming service are not cared for in movie theater-style craft.
In essence, when you shoot a movie designed for a movie theater, it changes the entire production. And therefore, the Oscars shouldn’t acknowledge streaming services like Netflix and Amazon.
But the Academy Awards rejected Spielberg’s “request.”
A statement from Spielberg’s Amblin Entertainment read, “Steven feels strongly about the difference between the streaming and theatrical situation. He’ll be happy if the others will join [his campaign] when that comes up [at the Academy Board of Governors meeting]. He will see what happens.”
The Academy also responded, “Awards rules discussions are ongoing with the branches. And the Board will likely consider the topic at the April meeting.”
Actor Edward Norton whose upcoming film “Motherless Brooklyn” is about to hit theaters on November 1st, thinks Netflix isn’t the problem. It’s the movie theaters in general.
Norton told Nick Schager of The Daily Beast, “it’s the theater chains that are destroying the theatrical experience. Period, full-stop. No one else.”
He added, “A lot of filmmakers and cinematographers that I know that have really started to look into this say that more than 60 percent of American theaters are running their projector at almost half the luminosity that they’re required by contract to run it at. They are delivering crappy sound and a dim picture, and no one is calling them on it.”
It’s not clear if he’s referring to the small-time movie theaters rather than Regal or AMC chains.
Norton continued, “If [movie theaters] were delivering what they’re supposed to be delivering, people would be going, ‘Wow, this is amazing, I do not get this at home’…Well, I want people to literally walk into their theater and find the manager and say, ‘If this looks dark, you’re giving me my money back. Because I’m paying — and at the ArcLight, I’m paying premium — for a premium experience.’”
Movie theaters are ever evolving frequently and most need to renovate every ten years in order to keep up with the competition. But sometimes these theaters have old equipment and frankly they don’t make a ton of money.
But Norton isn’t wrong. If it “looks dark” then you should absolutely get your money back.
Or, you could stay at home and watch Netflix.