February 09, 2018
Under pressure for their survival, the specialty-film labels need every bit of help they can get, and so do their art house rivals.
The Oscars won't just determine the future of individual winners and losers this year. They could also have a real impact on the future of specialty-film distributors. After stealing the luster from studios when it comes to the awards, they're now fighting for their lives in a radically changing media landscape, with streaming giants Netflix and Amazon threatening to gobble up the talent they've relied on to make a splash in awards season.
Oscars: Whats at Stake for the Best Picture Studios
Such studio subsidiaries as Fox Searchlight, Universal's Focus Features and Sony Pictures Classics were set up in the 1990s with three goals: (1) develop the kind of filmmakers who could then be assigned bigger-budget films; (2) win back some of the box-office gold that had been siphoned away by indie challengers like Harvey Weinstein's Miramax Films, which defined the game in the '90s; and (3) add a touch of class to an otherwise crass business.
None of these factors matters much today. With directors like Colin Trevorrow going straight from shoestring releases (Safety Not Guaranteed) to blockbusters (Jurassic World), the specialty divisions no longer function as breeding grounds for filmmakers; with corporations such as Disney aiming bigger and bigger in terms of theme parks and merchandising, as well as box office, there's little need for the paltry sums most Oscar winners bring; and with the studios led by corporate players increasingly removed from the day-to-day filmmaking process, Oscar's sheen has become all but irrelevant to the bottom line.
Under pressure for their survival, the specialty labels need every bit of help they can get, and so do their art house rivals. Each is playing for high stakes:
FOX SEARCHLIGHT
With the two frontrunners for Best Picture (The Shape of Water and Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri), Searchlight, led by longtime heads Stephen Gilula and Nancy Utley, has proved its uncanny eye for promising material. But will that matter once Disney absorbs Fox? In terms of box office, no. Shape has earned $55 million worldwide and Billboards $75 million, but those hits have to be balanced against such flops as Battle of the Sexes, with its $12.6 million to date. On the other hand, Disney's planned streaming service will need high-visibility content, and Oscar wins (along with the box-office boost they bring) could provide a healthy rationale for not just retaining Searchlight but bolstering its resources.
FOCUS FEATURES
Two years ago, after experimenting with genre movies with middling success, Focus underwent a course correction under then-new chairman Peter Kujawski, who promised to return Focus to its prestige-label roots. It bounced back this season with Darkest Hour ($46.4 million at the domestic box office, more than $100 million overall). An Oscar for Gary Oldman could add further lucre and counterbalance the financial disappointment of The Beguiled and The Book of Henry.
SONY PICTURES CLASSICS
Amid the ups and downs of their rivals, the veteran duo of Tom Bernard and Michael Barker has maintained a remarkably consistent course, relying on shrewd acquisitions rather than sinking money in pricey productions. They enter the Oscars with six nominations: four for Call Me by Your Name and two for foreign-language nominees Loveless and A Fantastic Woman. With parent Sony Pictures Entertainment looking like a prime target for acquisition by an internet giant, especially after Kaz Hirai's departure as CEO, they'll need to prove that their modest returns have added dividends.
ANNAPURNA
Megan Ellison's stand-alone indie, which has gone from financing films to distributing them, had a box-office dud in Detroit (a non-contender this awards season). But even though it declined to finance Phantom Thread itself, it produced the film for Focus. Should the movie prove an unlikely best picture or best actor winner, that would burnish the credentials of the self-financed company and perhaps help it lure still more A-list talent away from burgeoning Amazon and Netflix.
A24
Post-Moonlight, the producer-distributor, founded by Daniel Katz, David Fenkel and John Hodges, is seeking to maintain momentum as the hippest indie label around with awards for Lady Bird. It might need them given that The Florida Project was shut out of the best picture race and The Disaster Artist's James Franco was snubbed amid an avalanche of allegations about his past.
NEON
Launched early last year by Tom Quinn and Tim League, the company is eager to prove itself as the hot new kid on the block and, along with 30West, is betting on I, Tonya, which has earned more than $20 million and multiple awards for Allison Janney. Having gone on an acquisition spree at Sundance — its $10 million buy of Assassination Nation was the fest's biggest deal — Neon could do with an Oscar victory to prove it's in the same class as its more established rivals.
Latest News
Top news around the world
Coronavirus Disease

Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is an infectious disease caused by a newly discovered coronavirus.

Most people infected with the COVID-19 virus will experience mild to moderate respiratory illness and recover without requiring special treatment. Older people, and those with underlying medical problems like cardiovascular disease, diabetes, chronic respiratory disease, and cancer are more likely to develop serious illness.

Around the World

Celebrity News

> Latest News in Media

Watch It
Lori Loughlin, husband plead guilty in college admissions scandal | Page Six Celebrity News
May 22, 2020
3Tx-FvqZzVI
Celebrity breakups during quarantine: Megan Fox, Ashley Benson and more | Page Six Celebrity News
May 22, 2020
APr202A7bbQ
Darren Barnet from ‘Never Have I Ever’ shares his naughty DMs | Page Six Celebrity News
May 21, 2020
GAOySCx9Zi0
Ayesha Curry's Jaw-Dropping Bikini Pics Taken By Steph Curry | E! News
May 24, 2020
JOxRMbPMajk
Best Moments From Iconic 2001 Film "Pearl Harbor": Rewind | E! News
May 25, 2020
dvDxM-leiqw
"Terrace House" Star Hana Kimura Dead at 22 After Cyberbullying | E! News
May 23, 2020
xqo43SIrfRs
'Riverdale' Star Cole Sprouse on His Quarantine Mustache, 'Animal Crossing' and New Podcast
May 25, 2020
iN2edkR-OYM
Ben Platt on His Groundbreaking Radio City Music Hall Concert on Netflix
May 20, 2020
DXN5iMMfs60
Daveed Diggs On The Emotional Toll of Filming 'Snowpiercer' Stunts And The 'Hamilton' Movie
May 18, 2020
n17S9kH7XuA
Ahmaud Arbery Family Lawyer Says D.A.'s, Cops Criminally Investigated by FBI
May 25, 2020
r64cdXzvsPA
'Floribama Shore' Kirk Medas Arrest Video, Do You Know Who I Am? | TMZ
May 24, 2020
Qrl7Iq3lBDM
Jamie Kennedy Explains How Stand-Up Comedy's Changed Amid Pandemic | TMZ
May 24, 2020
Q6SG4jcR6VI
TV Schedule
Late Night Show
Watch the latest shows of U.S. top comedians

Sports

Latest sport results, news, videos, interviews and comments
Latest Events
08
Mar
ITALY: Serie A
Juventus - Inter Milan
08
Mar
ENGLAND: Premier League
Manchester United - Manchester City
08
Mar
ENGLAND: Premier League
Chelsea - Everton
08
Mar
SPAIN: La Liga
Real Betis - Real Madrid
08
Mar
ITALY: Serie A
AC Milan - Genoa
07
Mar
ENGLAND: Premier League
Burnley - Tottenham Hotspur
07
Mar
ENGLAND: Premier League
Arsenal - West Ham United
07
Mar
SPAIN: La Liga
Barcelona - Real Sociedad
07
Mar
ENGLAND: Premier League
Liverpool - Bournemouth
07
Mar
SPAIN: La Liga
Atletico Madrid - Sevilla
01
Mar
SPAIN: La Liga
Real Madrid - Barcelona
01
Mar
ENGLAND: Premier League
Everton - Manchester United
01
Mar
ENGLAND: Premier League
Tottenham Hotspur - Wolves
01
Mar
SPAIN: La Liga
Espanyol - Atletico Madrid
01
Mar
ITALY: Serie A
Cagliari - Roma
29
Feb
ENGLAND: Premier League
Watford - Liverpool
29
Feb
ITALY: Serie A
Napoli - Torino
29
Feb
ENGLAND: Premier League
Bournemouth - Chelsea
24
Feb
ENGLAND: Premier League
Liverpool - West Ham United
23
Feb
ENGLAND: Premier League
Arsenal - Everton
23
Feb
ENGLAND: Premier League
Manchester United - Watford
23
Feb
ITALY: Serie A
Roma - Lecce
23
Feb
SPAIN: La Liga
Atletico Madrid - Villarreal
22
Feb
SPAIN: La Liga
Levante - Real Madrid
22
Feb
ITALY: Serie A
Fiorentina - AC Milan
22
Feb
ENGLAND: Premier League
Leicester City - Manchester City
22
Feb
ITALY: Serie A
Spal - Juventus
Find us on Instagram
at @feedimo to stay up to date with the latest.
Featured Video You Might Like
0vmRhiLHE2U JFCZUoa6MYE UfN5PCF5EUo 2PV55f3-UAg W3y9zuI_F64 -7qCxIccihU pQ9gcOoH9R8 g5MRDEXRk4k tudKp5Vhs3k iwWHibhssSo kQr0XHPbICM 5NeCb7JxaRk
Copyright © 2020 Feedimo. All Rights Reserved.