Skip to content

The Dramatic Shift in U.S. TV Viewing: A Conversation with Dr. John Morse about the Nielsen Data

2015 October 28
by Peter Hamilton

Why is the number of live TV viewers dropping so significantly? Dr John Morse is my valued partner on consulting engagements that require senior-level analysis of U.S. audience viewing habits and trends. Channels, producers and stakeholders all rely on John’s judgement and his access to research data. We recently interviewed him about eroding TV audiences, a situation […]

POV Revealed (2/2): The Filters & Selection Process. What Are Your Odds of Success?

2015 October 12
by Peter Hamilton

We continue our updated coverage of POV, the flagship PBS documentary strand with a peak audience of 1.9Mn viewers. In this post: What is POV’s selection process, from Open Call to Offer? The Filters. Timeline? Who decides? What are your odds? Read POV Revealed, Part 1. Also: POV‘s 2015 and 2014 selections. SELECTION PROCESS Filters: Great non-fiction storytelling. Address social […]

CNEX Chinese Doc Forum 2015: Standouts & Prizewinners

2015 October 5
by Peter Hamilton

by Mark Lewis. The CNEX Chinese Doc Forum was held in Taipei this year. It was well attended by a large contingent of local filmmakers and representatives from funding organizations, broadcasters, distribution companies and festival programmers. Held over four days the Forum comprised of pitching sessions, panel discussions, screenings and master-classes. I was honored to […]

Inside PBS’s POV Documentary Strand (1/2): How Many Greenlights? The Fees? Budgets? And Rights? Plus Changes at the Top

2015 September 30
by Peter Hamilton

Personnel changes at POV reminded us to update our detailed profile of the PBS documentary flagship. Congrats to Simon Kilmurry who was appointed Executive Director of the International Documentary Association. Simon served POV for 16 years. The new key management team is: Chris White, Executive Producer. Eliza Licht, VP of Content Strategy & Engagement. Chris and Eliza are each […]

Kickstarter Success Stories: The Win/Loss Rate and Payoff Amongst 13,049 Launched Projects

2015 September 24
by Peter Hamilton
KS Success

Kickstarter and its crowd-funding peers are not an easy path to success. Since Kickstarter’s launch in 2009, 13,049 launched projects have earned $108.4 mn in total commitments. However, only 38% or 4,815 projects met their funding targets. These successful appeals raised $92.7 mn. That’s an average of only $19,257.70 for each successful project. The unsuccessful projects raised an […]

$859,425! The New Kickstarter Record for a Documentary Is Set by a Nerdy Science Film!

2015 September 18
by Peter Hamilton

Kickstarter recently set an amazing new record in the documentary category when 16,850 backers pledged $859,425. The campaign? “Help bring to life the definitive film on Bill Nye The Science Guy and his quest to change the world through science advocacy and education. With intimate and exclusive access, this is a behind-the-scenes portrait of “the Science […]

Marlon Wayans: Celebrity Reality. Inside the Successful Launch of a Reality Production Company / Updated

2015 September 17
by Peter Hamilton

It’s no secret: celebrity cuts through the clutter on the TV schedule: That applies to documentaries: Nat Geo Channel just announced projects with David Letterman, Adrien Brody, Ron Howard and others. As well as to Reality TV. Marlon Wayans is the $1Bn+ box office earner who successfully launched the Reality production company, Workaholics Entertainment. Workaholics […]

Titles: How To Win the New Programming Arms Race

2015 September 7
by Peter Hamilton

The head of a mid-sized U.S. network was searching for a breakthrough to the next level. I asked him: “What would be the answer to your prayers?” He replied: “A fresh, loud, buzzy show that feels unique and has breakout ratings potential.” “What Queer Eye was to Bravo or Ruby to Style.” “We’re looking for a […]