Every organization, industry and society is going through wrenching change right now. There will be no return to a “normal” state that resembles a prior period in world history. I am observing this first-hand in the health care and film industries, and as a well-informed observer in the industry I left 2 ½ years ago, the mailing industry.
The film industry is particularly going through wrenching change, but, as a recent entrant to the industry, I have seen both the challenges and the new opportunities that change has created. Clearly, the move to digital technology has effectively destroyed the traditional retail DVD rental market, with the limited exception of Red Box kiosks. It has also thrown into confusion the economic model for digital downloads, since Netflix has built an economic model based on fixed monthly rentals, although its founder Reed Hastings recently noted that the low monthly rentals may not work if subscribers want mostly new films, as opposed to a mix or new and old ones.
I experienced the consequence of this complexity with the difficulty my strategic consultant had in describing the new potential economic model for our film From the Rough in preparing our investor memorandum. He found the data and did the analyses we needed, but it took longer and was far more complicated, because any data that was more than a few years old on non-theatrical revenue streams was essentially obsolete.