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Another watershed event, brought to you by Netflix?

March 16, 2011

Netflix is about to beat out every network known to man for David Fincher and Kevin Spacey’s drama series House of Cards.

John Malone’s comments about Netflix basically being HBO 10 years ago turns out to be extremely prescient.  And this could very well change the TV distribution landscape for good.  But questions abound.  For example, how on earth do you market something like this without the ability to run promo on your own network, or without lead-in?  Maybe you run them before video streams, or include inserts in DVD mailings?  Risky marketing, but if this show ends up garnering a significant audience, I think it is game over for cable companies and, frankly, a few networks.  Who needs ’em anymore?  Also, how do you program something like this on the Netflix platform (assuming it is meant for the Netflix platform)?  Appointment viewing has always been an important factor in audience development.  Has the inflection point on that been reached?  Finally, I get needing to overpay to get into the game, but in the current TV environment, how on earth do you justify a 26 episode order???

One last question.  How will this effect the HBO/Showtime window that currently exists for movie rights?  Now that Netflix is directly stepping on their toes, will they seek to correct the advantage Netflix has?

Things are about to get even more interesting.

Oh, by the way, if you are wondering where the hell I have been, see below.  Produced by the fine people at Unrendered Motion Picture Company for Smirnoff.  Aired on MTV networks around the world.

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