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Posts Tagged ‘Primetime Emmys’

“It’s all television, whether people watch on a mobile device, a tablet or a flat screen.”
Bruce Rosenblum
Chairman of the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences

Last week, on July 18, 2013 to be exact, when I heard House of Cards was nominated for nine Primetime Emmys I knew it was significant, but I needed a few days to think over writing a post about it.

Among those nominations were best actor in a drama (Kevin Spacey) and best actress in a drama (Robin Wright) and best drama. The significance, of course, being that House of Cards is the first show developed not for network or cable television, but for digital distribution (via Netflix) to be nominated for major Emmys.

“The world of 7:30 on Tuesday nights, that’s dead. A stake has been driven through its heart, its head has been cut off, and its mouth has been stuffed with garlic. The captive audience is gone. If you give people this opportunity to mainline all in one day, there’s reason to believe they will do it…..[House of Cards] isn’t TV, because we don’t have the studio, we don’t have standards and practices, we don’t have people breathing down your neck saying, ‘Remember, kids love bright colors!’ We don’t have people militating against collective disinterest. I wanted to create an environment where you go in, point at the left field wall and swing as hard as you can.”
House of Cards director David Fincher
Playing with a New Deck
DGA article by Robert Abele

And House of Cards wasn’t the only Netflix show to find itself in the spotlight, its shows Arrested Development and Hemlock Grove also received Emmy nominations for a Netflix total of 14. Netflix, like all businesses, has had its ups and downs, but the Emmy nomination is not only an up moment for the company started in 1997—but it’s now a historic milestone in the always evolving world of storytelling.

By the way, the impetus for starting Netflix has its own nice little back story:

“I got the idea for Netflix after my company was acquired. I had a big late fee for “Apollo 13.” It was six weeks late and I owed the video store $40. I had misplaced the cassette. It was all my fault. I didn’t want to tell my wife about it. And I said to myself, “I’m going to compromise the integrity of my marriage over a late fee?” Later, on my way to the gym, I realized they had a much better business model.”
Reed Hastings, Founder and CEO
NY Times article Out of Africa

“Netflix democratizes the viewing experience. It exploits a trend (DVR, on-demand, streaming), which strips execs of the power to determine when & how a show will be viewed, and it places that power in the hands of consumers. That’s chaos for networks, but out of that storm emerges a new order, one governed by viewers instead of content-providers.”
Beau Willimon, creator of House of Cards
The Hollywood Reporter

P.S. HBO led the Emmy nominations this year with 108, but I’m old enough to remember when cable TV was the new kid on the block and was thought by many as just a place for old TV show reruns, low budget productions, and a stopping ground for Hollywood movies before they hit network TV. Digital distribution/Online streaming is the new cable TV of today—but it’s gotten respect much quicker.

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Once Upon a Time in Hollywood (Part 1) 

Scott W. Smith

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