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TCM book library


Shank Asu
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21 minutes ago, Shank Asu said:

Anyone purchase/read any of the TCM published books from the shop?  Just picked up Eddie's Dark City and can't wait to get through it. 

You do know this book has been available for years in public libraries across the country...yes?

It is highly ironic that TCM hasn't allocated budget for Eddie to show Paramount's DARK CITY (1950) which undoubtedly inspired the title of his book.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dark_City_(1950_film)

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1 hour ago, TopBilled said:

You do know this book has been available for years in public libraries across the country...yes?

It is highly ironic that TCM hasn't allocated budget for Eddie to show Paramount's DARK CITY (1950) which undoubtedly inspired the title of his book.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dark_City_(1950_film)

I'd only started visiting the TCM site and really watching the channel consistently for about a year so i wasn't aware of the book before then, but apparently the one i bought was a new version.  I am mostly a fan of libraries for their used book sales.  i tend to want to own books that i read. 

I own quite a few film books going back to my film school days.  Dark City, for a reference book, is done in a very entertaining way.

There's a few books on TCM's shop that look appealing to me, but wanted to start with this one as i've been watching a lot of noir.

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1 hour ago, TopBilled said:

You do know this book has been available for years in public libraries across the country...yes?

It is highly ironic that TCM hasn't allocated budget for Eddie to show Paramount's DARK CITY (1950) which undoubtedly inspired the title of his book.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dark_City_(1950_film)

One thing i'm starting to pick up on from a few threads is that TCM doesn't have the budget to show certain films.  that's unfortunate. maybe time to spread that wine club and cruise money around.  Haven't seen Dark City but you've now got it on my radar.

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10 minutes ago, Shank Asu said:

One thing i'm starting to pick up on from a few threads is that TCM doesn't have the budget to show certain films.  that's unfortunate. maybe time to spread that wine club and cruise money around.  Haven't seen Dark City but you've now got it on my radar.

I first read Eddie's book about ten years ago, certainly well before he started appearing on TCM. 

Ben Mankiewicz was making $200,000 a year when Robert Osborne was still on the air. And I am sure Ben's salary went up considerably after he basically replaced Robert. I would imagine the other hosts like Eddie are making anywhere from $150,000 to $250,000 annually. 

The profits from the wine club are likely being poured (pun intended) into the salaries of the hosts and executives. That revenue is probably not being used to lease more films from Universal and Paramount, or else we'd see evidence of those films airing on TCM.

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37 minutes ago, TopBilled said:

I first read Eddie's book about ten years ago, certainly well before he started appearing on TCM. 

Ben Mankiewicz was making $200,000 a year when Robert Osborne was still on the air. And I am sure Ben's salary went up considerably after he basically replaced Robert. I would imagine the other hosts like Eddie are making anywhere from $150,000 to $250,000 annually. 

The profits from the wine club are likely being poured (pun intended) into the salaries of the hosts and executives. That revenue is probably not being used to lease more films from Universal and Paramount, or else we'd see evidence of those films airing on TCM.

I think TCM has enough revenue just from cable fees alone to lease an occasional Paramount title.  The Wine Club pales in comparison.  S&P estimates for 2020 were that TCM took in $286M in TV provider (cable/satellite/streaming cable replacement services) fees.

https://www.latimes.com/entertainment-arts/business/story/2021-06-22/tcm-fights-to-keep-classic-film-alive-on-tv-in-a-streaming-world

As you were in the industry, you know things can get complicated quickly on the legal side in the film & TV business.  There's likely more to it than just simply cost.

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13 minutes ago, txfilmfan said:

I think TCM has enough revenue just from cable fees alone to lease an occasional Paramount title.  The Wine Club pales in comparison.  S&P estimates for 2020 were that TCM took in $286M in TV provider (cable/satellite/streaming cable replacement services) fees.

https://www.latimes.com/entertainment-arts/business/story/2021-06-22/tcm-fights-to-keep-classic-film-alive-on-tv-in-a-streaming-world

As you were in the industry, you know things can get complicated quickly on the legal side in the film & TV business.  There's likely more to it than just simply cost.

Well I think the main thing is that bringing too many films in from outside the library goes against the original business model. The original plan was to create the channel as a platform to show off Ted Turner's recently acquired baubles and assorted treasures (namely CITIZEN KANE, CASABLANCA, THE WIZARD OF OZ and GONE WITH THE WIND which is now unfashionable to glorify). Those four films were the real reason Turner bought the MGM/UA library and also picked up the WB and RKO libraries, because he wanted to covet those titles. Then after getting them, the next step was to let the world know they were his films by running them on his newly created channel. He had no intention of letting American Movie Classics keep showing them.

So to sustain this new channel they devised a business plan that would cycle through the films in these combined libraries and start issuing them on DVD. They really just stole the business plan from American Movie Classics and fine-tuned it. AMC had a Star of the Month each month and had its own monthly magazine. Also AMC was helping hawk VHS tapes. With TCM that translated into hawking DVDs issued through the Warner Archive.

Therefore it did not make sense to be showing a lot of Paramount or Universal films, if they could not sell those films on DVD and make substantial profits from them. When they did month-long retrospectives on stars and based around particular themes, they sometimes had no choice but to lease a title from Paramount or Universal. For instance you cannot make Elizabeth Taylor Star of the Month and not borrow A PLACE IN THE SUN from Paramount; or make Olivia de Havilland Star of the Month and not borrow THE HEIRESS from Paramount. 

The whole argument about budget is really this-- they do not have to allocate large chunks of the budget for films outside the Turner library because they don't need to and their goal is to just keep pushing the MGM/UA/WB/RKO titles they have on DVD and now make available on various streaming platforms.

They have added in other revenue generating schemes like the Wine Club, the cruises, the books, the film festival, the auctions etcetera all under the artificial guise of promoting a lifestyle among affluent viewers. They have found as many ways as they can to milk the cow dry.

The films were not originally made for these schemes or purposes.

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11 minutes ago, TopBilled said:

Well I think the main thing is that bringing too many films in from outside the library goes against the original business model. The original plan was to create the channel as a platform to show off Ted Turner's recently acquired baubles and assorted treasures (namely CITIZEN KANE, CASABLANCA, THE WIZARD OF OZ and GONE WITH THE WIND which is now unfashionable to glorify). Those four films were the real reason Turner bought the MGM/UA library and also picked up the WB and RKO libraries, because he wanted to covet those titles. Then after getting them, the next step was to let the world know they were his films by running them on his newly created channel. He had no intention of letting American Movie Classics keep showing them.

So to sustain this new channel they devised a business plan that would cycle through the films in these combined libraries and start issuing them on DVD. They really just stole the business plan from American Movie Classics and fine-tuned it. AMC had a Star of the Month each month and had its own monthly magazine. Also AMC was helping hawk VHS tapes. With TCM that translated into hawking DVDs issued through the Warner Archive.

Therefore it did not make sense to be showing a lot of Paramount or Universal films, if they could not sell those films on DVD and make substantial profits from them. When they did month-long retrospectives on stars and based around particular themes, they sometimes had no choice but to lease a title from Paramount or Universal. For instance you cannot make Elizabeth Taylor Star of the Month and not borrow A PLACE IN THE SUN from Paramount; or make Olivia de Havilland Star of the Month and not borrow THE HEIRESS from Paramount. 

The whole argument about budget is really this-- they do not have to allocate large chunks of the budget for films outside the Turner library because they don't need to and their goal is to just keep pushing the MGM/UA/WB/RKO titles they have on DVD and now make available on various streaming platforms.

They have added in other revenue generating schemes like the Wine Club, the cruises, the books, the film festival, the auctions etcetera all under the artificial guise of promoting a lifestyle among affluent viewers. They have found as many ways as they can to milk the cow dry.

The films were not originally made for these schemes or purposes.

My main reason for my post was that I believe your earlier posts about budgets gave the impression that TCM is cash-poor and can't afford to lease titles from other rights-holders.

There's a difference between choosing not to lease those titles (for whatever reasons) and not having the money to do so.  I think your follow-up clarified that.  

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14 minutes ago, txfilmfan said:

My main reason for my post was that I believe your earlier posts about budgets gave the impression that TCM is cash-poor and can't afford to lease titles from other rights-holders.

There's a difference between choosing not to lease those titles (for whatever reasons) and not having the money to do so.  I think your follow-up clarified that.  

Thanks. Yes, I did want to clarify. Mainly because I have not really been going on about budget like others have. 

However...budget plays into their decisions to some extent.

It does cost money for them to lease from outside the MGM/UA/WB/RKO Turner library. But they will definitely pull in an outside film if it fits their plans to honor a household name or push a political agenda/theme.

If we look at their monthly schedules on the whole, it's more about their prescribed business model and using the films they already have.

 

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43 minutes ago, TopBilled said:

Well I think the main thing is that bringing too many films in from outside the library goes against the original business model. The original plan was to create the channel as a platform to show off Ted Turner's recently acquired baubles and assorted treasures (namely CITIZEN KANE, CASABLANCA, THE WIZARD OF OZ and GONE WITH THE WIND which is now unfashionable to glorify). Those four films were the real reason Turner bought the MGM/UA library and also picked up the WB and RKO libraries, because he wanted to covet those titles. Then after getting them, the next step was to let the world know they were his films by running them on his newly created channel. He had no intention of letting American Movie Classics keep showing them.

So to sustain this new channel they devised a business plan that would cycle through the films in these combined libraries and start issuing them on DVD. They really just stole the business plan from American Movie Classics and fine-tuned it. AMC had a Star of the Month each month and had its own monthly magazine. Also AMC was helping hawk VHS tapes. With TCM that translated into hawking DVDs issued through the Warner Archive.

Therefore it did not make sense to be showing a lot of Paramount or Universal films, if they could not sell those films on DVD and make substantial profits from them. When they did month-long retrospectives on stars and based around particular themes, they sometimes had no choice but to lease a title from Paramount or Universal. For instance you cannot make Elizabeth Taylor Star of the Month and not borrow A PLACE IN THE SUN from Paramount; or make Olivia de Havilland Star of the Month and not borrow THE HEIRESS from Paramount. 

The whole argument about budget is really this-- they do not have to allocate large chunks of the budget for films outside the Turner library because they don't need to and their goal is to just keep pushing the MGM/UA/WB/RKO titles they have on DVD and now make available on various streaming platforms.

They have added in other revenue generating schemes like the Wine Club, the cruises, the books, the film festival, the auctions etcetera all under the artificial guise of promoting a lifestyle among affluent viewers. They have found as many ways as they can to milk the cow dry.

The films were not originally made for these schemes or purposes.

Thanks for that brief history of TCM.  Turner ended up selling the company fairly early on didn't he?

I still have a TCM edition of Citizen Kane on VHS that i bought back in the 90's when i was still in high school.

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