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October 3, 2016

September 30th News Report from your Los Angeles Representative

Weekly Update from Kelly Graham-Scherer, Los Angeles Representative

Hi everyone,

The ratings for the first week of the new television season are in and, as expected, they reflect the changing way in which viewers are consuming their favorite shows. As detailed in the Los Angeles Times below, overall prime-time TV usage was off around 7% among the 18-to-34 age group compared with a year ago, and while execs say the viewers are there, they are just "watching in different places...where they want, when they want.”
http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/envelope/cotown/la-et-ct-premiere-week-ratings-20160927-snap-story.html

The ability of consumers to watch "where they want, when they want" is at the center of a current deliberation at the FCC, but industry watchers were frustrated this week when a crucial vote was postponed. As explained in Variety below, FCC members will continue to deliberate on a proposal that would require cable and satellite operators to offer a free app so subscribers could forgo the rental of set-top boxes.
http://variety.com/2016/biz/news/fcc-pulls-set-top-box-1201873771/

The Chinese conglomerate Dalian Wanda Group has announced a partnership with Sony Pictures, giving it some creative control over upcoming Sony films and underscoring China’s rapidly rising influence in Hollywood. The L.A. Times has details below.
http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/envelope/cotown/la-et-ct-wanda-group-20160923-snap-story.html

Finally this week, the recent announcement that Fox would sue Netflix for employee poaching continues to cause reverberations across the industry and beyond. As detailed in the Hollywood Reporter below, the showdown has caught the attention of labor lawyers throughout California, who say Netflix's potential legal defense - that the use of fixed-term employment contracts is not enforceable - could upend similar deals across industries and impact tens of thousands of workers.
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/thr-esq/netflixs-poaching-fox-employees-could-932771

Warmest regards,

Kelly

Kelly Graham-Scherer
Los Angeles Representative
Toronto/ Ontario Film Office

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