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POL 128 Lecture Notes - Rupert Murdoch, Making Money, Product Placement

Politics and Public Administration
Course Code
POL 128
Joseph Zboralski

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approx. 10,000-12,000 companies involved in film making today
cultural products account for the most sales in US
industry is dominated by Warner Brothers, Paramount, Columbia, 20th Century Fox,
Universal, and Disney.
each studio makes about 10-15 major films a year, and about a dozen minor
average film today costs $120 million
Blair Witch Project ($35,000 budget) made indie films popular
Breakdown of studios:
Warner Brothers: aka Time Warner, was bought by AOL at one point, but has since
separated and is now owned just by Time Magazine. $28.7 billion/year
Paramount : owned by Viacom. $15 billion/year
Columbia: owned by Sony. $8 billion/year
20th Century Fox: owned by News Corp (Rupert Murdoch). $33.7 billion/year
NBC/Universal: owned mostly by Comcast (used to be owned by General Electric).
$16 billion/year
Disney: largest entertainment company, biggest profit margin. $42.2 billion/year
Top 10 films in 2012:
10)Men In Black 3 (Sony, $624 mill.)
9)Hunger Games (Lion’s Gate, $686 mill.)
8)Madagascar 3 (Paramount, $742 mill.)
7)Spiderman (Sony, $752 mill.)
6)Twilight Saga (Summit, $829 mill.)
5)Ice Age (Fox, $875 mill.)
4)The Hobbit (Warner Bros., $980 mill.)
3)Dark Knight Rises (Warner Bros., $1.05 bill.)
2)Skyfall (Sony, $1.1 bill.)
1)The Avengers (Disney, $1.5 bill)
Other ways studios are making money:
Ancillary rights- selling rights to TV, Netflix, etc. Selling dvd rights, syndication rights.
Selling to airlines, the military, collages. Selling song rights, book publishing rights.
Toys, games, costumes, etc.
Product placement: took off after E.T. (Reese’s Pieces), now reaching all time high in
movies like Skyfall (Heineken, $45 million deal)