Barry Diller, the former chairman CEO of two famous Hollywood studios — Paramount and 20th Century Fox (now a part of Disney), said that the streaming industry has killed the movie industry. He had given an exclusive interview to NPR. He also spoke of streaming platforms acquiring movie studios which was another blow for movie theaters.
The 79-year-old Hollywood icon told NPR that the movie business was finished, and it would never come back. He also said that it was much more than movie theaters closing or ticket sales decreasing due to the pandemic.
Speaking to NPR at the sidelines of the media and technology conference — Allen & Company Sun Valley Conference, he also spoke of how streaming had altered the industry and not for the better.
The movie mogul who was at the helm of Paramount hits during the seventies and eighties including Saturday Night Fever said that he used to be in the movie business where movies were made because people cared about them.
He said that there used to be a goal that included the generation of excitement and enthusiasm for new movies. He also said that there used to be a “whole run-up” that included time, energy and money for movie distribution and publicity campaigns.
Now companies measured success differently. He said that the multi-billion dollar streaming industry was geared to getting customers to sign up for Amazon Prime rather than the actual movies themselves and he did not find it interesting.
Although he accepted that streaming services had become indispensable during the pandemic he said that these platforms did not make movies. Instead, he said that offerings from streaming platforms were “some weird algorithmic process that has created things that last 100 minutes or so.”
He said that he had “almost zero” interest in the movie business and had ventured into producing Broadway plays as he found it to be more creative.