India incentivizes 40% reimbursement, AI Dubbing Revolution, Woodcut’s Global Triumphs, Animation Leaps, and Year-End Highlights Unveiled

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In this week’s edition of the Entertainment Supply Chain Digest, dive into the dynamic realm of entertainment where India spearheads international projects with a 40% reimbursement incentive. Explore the AI Dubbing Revolution, Animation Leaps, Woodcut’s Global Triumphs, and the 2023 Year-End Highlights, all showcasing the industry’s pulsating heartbeat.

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Recap 2023

Hottest IP Stories, Formats, Books, Games, Podcasts to be turned into the next big blockbuster
  • Netflix’s 2023 Expansion: Mega Facility, $2.5B in South Korea In 2023, Netflix unveiled plans to establish one of the largest fully integrated production facilities, a remarkable $848 million project in New Jersey. Netflix also made headlines with an announcement of $2.5 billion investment in South Korea over the next four years, doubling its commitment since 2016 to boost Korean content.
  • Disney’s Streaming Moves: Hulu Stake Acquisition, Netflix Deal, and Globo Collaboration Disney strengthened its position in the streaming realm by acquiring Comcast’s one-third stake in Hulu for $8.6 billion. Disney also signed a short-term content deal with Netflix, offering 14 popular shows globally, and collaborated with Globo to co-produce four Brazilian films.
  • BBC Studios Achieves £2 Billion Revenues, Expands Global Presence and Commits to Regional Storytelling. BBC Studios achieved a historic milestone by surpassing £2 billion in revenues. The UK giant expanded its influence by acquiring a stake in Turbine Studios. Demonstrating a commitment to regional storytelling, BBC Studios also collaborated on Welsh projects and established Brown Bob Cymru in Cardiff.
  • AI Advancements in Filmmaking: Electric Sheep, Adobe, AI-Media, and Runway’s Gen-1 in 2023 Electric Sheep, a London-based AI VFX startup, launched Spotlight, a cloud-based platform streamlining film and TV post-production through simplified rotoscoping. Pre-seed funding led by Dasein Capital, Electric Sheep aims to automate rotoscoping. Adobe enhanced Creative Cloud video tools with AI features, including Premiere Pro for dialog cleanup and After Effects for rotoscoping. AI-Media introduced LEXI for real-time automatic captioning, and Runway’s Gen-1 model transformed existing videos using text prompts or reference images.
  • Filmustage, Nvidia, NeuralGarage: 2023 Filmmaking Tech Filmustage secures $550K in funding for its groundbreaking AI platform, streamlining film pre-production by breaking down scripts and categorizing elements. Nvidia introduces cloud services, including NeMo for language models and Picasso for generating content, while Wurl launches ContentDiscovery, an AI-driven ad platform for targeted content promotion. NeuralGarage’s ‘VisualDub’ achieves a historic milestone with the first implementation of multilingual lip sync in advertising, showcasing the diverse advancements and specializations in technology in 2023

Recap 2023

Hottest IP Stories, Formats, Books, Games, Podcasts to be turned into the next big blockbuster
  • Warner Bros. Discovery’s 2023 Global Expansion Through Key Partnerships In 2023, Warner Bros. Discovery strengthened its global presence through strategic partnerships. Collaborating with Taiwan Mobile and TAICCA enabled the global production and distribution of Taiwanese original content, while an expanded partnership with J:COM, Japan’s largest cable TV operator, increased linear TV channels from two to seven, reinforcing commitment to diverse international content development.
  • Paramount Global’s 2023 Expansion Boosts Performance in Streaming In 2023, Paramount Global extended its Nickelodeon deal with MBC Group in MENA for three more years, entered the Japanese market with Paramount+, and introduced the Top Gear FAST channel in five European markets through an expanded collaboration with BBC Studios. This strategic maneuver contributed to robust performance amid increased streaming expenses.
  • Banijay’s 2023 Triumphs Global Expansions and Creative Initiatives Banijay achieved notable milestones, having acquired The Forge in the UK to strengthen its scripted portfolio and formed the Hyphenate Media Group with Eva Longoria and Cris Abrego. The company expanded its global presence through collaborations with Greenboo Production in Italy and A Fabrica in Brazil. Initiatives like SV Docs and Screen Line Productions underscored Banijay’s commitment to supporting investigative documentaries and youth-oriented scripted content
  • Virtual Production Advancements and Investments in 2023 Amazon Studios had introduced the AWS-Powered Virtual Production Mega Stage and formed the Amazon Studios Virtual Production (ASVP) department. Anna Valley and Garden Studios had collaborated to create a high-tech virtual production studio in central London. Accenture had invested in Vū Technologies, enhancing virtual environments with its generative AI tool, Vū.ai. Meanwhile, Assimilate’s Live FX 9.6 software had become a key player in LED wall-based virtual production, offering real-time VFX capabilities and cost-effective media server reduction
  • Hollywood’s 2023 Impact: Strikes, Economic Setback, and Global Film Surge The 2023 SAG-AFTRA strike, following the Writers Guild strike, significantly impacted Hollywood, resulting in an estimated $6.5 billion economic setback. This transformative period navigated industry shifts, including the rise of streaming platforms and concerns about AI. Amid the disruptions in Hollywood, there was an increase in global unscripted productions, and markets such as India, the UK, France, Brazil, and Germany (European & Asian Markets) beamed last year.

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IP Deals

Hottest IP Stories, Formats, Books, Games, Podcasts to be turned into the next big blockbuster

Production Deals

Sneak peak into recently announced production projects worldwide
  • The BET+ thriller “One Night Stay,” starring Stephen Bishop, LeToya Luckett, and Iyana Halley, is to be produced by Worldwide Entertainment and Media in collaboration with Choice Films. The gripping tale unfolds as an obsessive one-night stand disrupts the lives of Marcus (Bishop) and Milan (Luckett) (🇺🇸)
  • Indie horror producers are set to capitalize on the public domain release of the 1928 version of Mickey Mouse with an “untitled horror-comedy” directed by Steven LaMorte, where a sadistic mouse torments ferry passengers, promising a twisted take on the beloved character, production to begin this spring. (🇺🇸)
  • Tubi announces “Shattered Glass: A WNBPA Story,” a sports docu produced by Malka Media Group in partnership with the Women’s National Basketball Players Association (WNBPA) and PUMA, delving into the lives and achievements of four WNBA players. (🌐)
  • Fox has committed to an animated drama series adaptation of “Elfquest”, the iconic fantasy comic series from 1978, exploring the challenges of a diverse community of elves and fictional species striving for survival on a primitive Earth-like planet with two moons. (🇺🇸)
  • MAX and Hyperobject Industries collaborate on “Stormbound,” a documentary on storm chaser Jeff Gammons, produced by Adam McKay, and directed by Miko Lim. (🌐)

Season Renewals

More episodes on the way! Season Renewal Announcements

Distribution Deals

Distributors securing worldwide content across different genres, languages and format types

Acquisition Deals

Streamers & channels acquiring latest content across the world
  • Woodcut International secures major sales with global broadcasters, including BBC Select, MagellanTV, Blue Ant Media, SVT, Viasat World, La7, Dox TV, Al Jazeera, and Marquee TV, featuring a diverse array of unscripted titles spanning factual, history, and true crime content. Notable titles such as “World War II: Women on the Frontline” and “Touching the Void” highlight Woodcut’s significant impact in the global unscripted content market. (🌐)
  • Prime Video secures global rights for the Nigerian drama “Water and Garri,” featuring international singer Tiwa Savage. It follows the journey of ambitious fashion designer Aisha returning to her native home after a decade in the U.S. due to a family tragedy.(🇳🇬)
  • Hulu acquires Laura Chinn’s coming-of-age drama “Suncoast,” starring Nico Parker, Laura Linney, and Woody Harrelson, ahead of its world premiere at the 2024 Sundance Film Festival. The film depicts a teen’s journey living with her mother and brother in the early 2000s amidst protests tied to a groundbreaking medical case. (🇺🇸)
  • Broadcasters in Asia, including Warner Bros Discovery and True Visions, have secured a variety of factual programming from TVF International, encompassing wildlife, sports, and current affairs, with titles such as “Japanese Islands from Above” and “Bear: Koala Hero,” spanning regions like Southeast Asia, Mongolia, Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Vietnam, in deals brokered by TVFI’s head of sales, Serafina Pang. (Asia)
  • Off the Fence’s documentary “Silverback” has secured presales with U.S. streamer Xumo, BBC, France Télévisions, Austria’s ORF, Sweden’s UR, and Finland’s Yle, featuring wildlife cameraman Vianet Djenguet’s efforts to protect Congo’s endangered eastern lowland gorillas, particularly focusing on the habituation of alpha-male gorilla Mpungwe. (🌐)

Global Entertainment Leaders Speak

PFX, PostProduction, VFX, Animation, Advertising
Jiri Mika – Managing Director at PFX
Jayakumar P – CEO at Toonz Media Group

Companies Making Headlines

Launch and Expansions of facilities, studios, services & technologies
  • The Indian Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, introduces incentive schemes for international film projects. Up to 40% reimbursement on production expenses (including live shoots, animation projects, post production and visual effects services), with an enhanced cap of $4 million (INR 30 Crore). (🇮🇳)
  • 34 film projects from 27 countries selected for 21st Berlinale Co-Production Market, seeking partners for international co-productions, including 17 directed by women. (🇩🇪)
  • Canal+ gains approval from the French Competition Authority to acquire OCS and Orange Studio, becoming sole shareholder after joint control with Orange. (🇫🇷)
  • Canal+ Group and Warner Bros Discovery have extended their exclusive premium pay TV agreement, ensuring Canal+ subscribers in France continue to access Warner Bros. films, including hits like “Barbie” and “Wonka,” just six months after their theatrical release, alongside titles such as “The Flash” and “Aquaman And The Lost Kingdom.” (🇫🇷)
  • Ultra Media and Entertainment partners with Einstin Media, entering South India’s film industry with the acquisition of ‘Antony’ digital rights. (🇮🇳)

Featured New Specializations

Global innovations & breakthroughs in the Entertainment supply-chain

Localization & Post-Production

Latest updates in the world of content Localization & Post-Production
  • Storyblocks, a subscription-based stock media platform, introduces DaVinci Resolve templates in its library, enabling users to enhance videos with motion graphics and visual effects seamlessly. ( 🇺🇸)
  • Fineshare introduces FineVoice 1.5, an AI-powered tool offering voice changing, dubbing, voice cloning, and more. It simplifies audio creation, making it accessible for creators anywhere, anytime. (🇭🇰)
  • CC is set to launch Naturaleza Salvaje, a Spanish-language FAST channel, utilizing the new Magellan Voice Works AI-driven translation and dubbing technology. (🇺🇸)
  • W4tchTV collaborates with Dubformer to revolutionize video distribution via AI-driven dubbing for factual shows, facilitating global content accessibility. (🇫🇷)
  • DNEG, a leading visual entertainment services company, hires Emmy-nominated producers Ron Ames and Jesse Kobayashi to leverage their expertise for in-house filmmaking roles, enhancing service offerings. (🌐)

Animation, VFX & Virtual Production

Latest global updates in Animation, Visual Effects VFX & Virtual Production
  • Kerala Government pioneers a comprehensive AVGC-XR policy (Animation, Visual Effects, Gaming and Comics), in its aim to become a hub and create 50,000 jobs by 2029. (🇮🇳)
  • Sony Pictures Entertainment inaugurates Torchlight, an advanced visualization facility at Culver City, featuring cutting-edge technology from Sony and Epic Games’ Unreal Engine.(🌐)
  • WiMi Hologram Cloud Inc. (WIMI) unveils a groundbreaking quantum dot micro-scale component for AR/VR displays, boasting ultra-fast response time, high resolution, brightness, and superior outdoor use. (🇨🇳)
  • The U.K. Government raises Animation & Kids’ TV Tax Credit to 39%, providing additional relief for children’s TV, animated TV, and films, effective from January 1, 2024. (🇬🇧)
  • VFX house Scenesis Pictures establishes a Paris office ahead of its London launch, offering remote VFX services for UK clients from the central Paris location. (🇫🇷 🇬🇧)
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