The growing number of film and serial productions for streaming portals is a welcome new opportunity for filmmakers outside the US to be creative and make a living. The image of "streamer studios" in the industry is therefore fundamentally positive, especially as they often offer greater scope for experimentation.
However, some British independent film producers have an alternative view on this topic -- they warn against getting too attached to the new big players like Netflix and Amazon, who mainly produce for their streaming subscribers. It is undoubtedly much more convenient to produce a film or series for Netflix, where payment comes reliably from a single source, than to tap into up to 50 different funding and financing sources to make an (artist/Indie) cinema film, the success of which is also uncertain, according to a recent Guardian article.
But in the next few years the streaming market is likely to change considerably, as other providers such as Disney, Apple and others set up their own services -- this will result in a highly fragmented film offering, but consumers will not want to take out several different streaming subscriptions, so that after a fierce competition ("streamer wars") only a few portals will ultimately survive. Then there would again be less work for filmmakers.
Until then, however, indie cinema film production could have come to a standstill, the film producers warn, as it is difficult to compete with Netflix & Co. For example, for well-known actors whose names are important to secure film financing -- many stars, however, are already tied to streaming projects, as are film crews who turn off entire series seasons at a stretch. Personnel costs are correspondingly high: great for those who work hard on the set, but difficult for producers when it comes to financing films. It would therefore be possible, so the fear, that in a few years a few streaming providers from the USA would have the market for film and serial production in their hands worldwide -- at least for Great Britain it would look gloomy.
Whether similar fears might be appropriate for the German-speaking market is hard for us to judge -- at least we hear of similar problems to get enough specialists for film productions, and in order to get film financing off the ground, it takes a lot of effort. The extent to which the film production landscape will change over the next few years will probably depend to a large extent on film funding; to our knowledge, the future direction of this funding is currently under discussion.
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