The 20th Century was all about big giant businesses, with a Vatican-like hierarchy. The movie and TV business was no exception.
At the top, in the rarefied cigar filled air of the big 3 networks and at the movie studios executives called the shots. They controlled the capital and the access needed to succeed. They were the Brahmans of the moving picture.
But now this model is dead, or very soon will be.
The cost of film production is a 1/50th of what it was 15 years ago. Quality content can be produced at low cost and sold to specific niches, all the while being wildly profitable. This is new.
To make a bunch of money in TV or film, one need not produce the next Star Wars, starting off millions of dollars in the hole. One “simply” needs to produce a good product and make sure the appropriate audience is aware of it.
Of course even in this new model the majority of shows will fail. But a good story is a good story and if one can find an audience which relates to one’s story there is a much higher chance of success than there was even just a few years ago.
The MPAA needs to stop worrying about spreading draconian copyright regulations around the world and should instead focus on adapting to a new flatter industry model and on creating high quality content.
We may be heading into a new golden age of story telling. Good news for writers. Good news for actors. Good news for audiences. Even good news for advertisers. Bad news for top heavy Hollywood.
The market wins again.