‘WandaVision,’ ‘Bridgerton’ Top TV Time Charts

Disney+’s “WandaVision” was the top rising show and Netflix’s “Bridgerton” was the top binge show on the TV Time charts for the week ended Jan. 17.

“WandaVision” is an episodic series featuring the Marvel characters of Wanda Maximoff (The Scarlet Witch) and Vision. Starring Elizabeth Olsen and Paul Bettany, the Disney+ series parodies classic TV shows.

Moving up from No. 2 to No. 1 on the binge chart was romance series “Bridgerton,” which hit screens on Christmas. Produced by Shonda Rhimes and based on Julia Quinn’s bestsellers, the Netflix series follows eight close-knit siblings of the Bridgerton family looking for love and happiness in London high society.

Taking the second spot on the binge chart was Netflix’s “Lupin,” which hit screens Jan. 8 and is based on the books. It follows a man whose life was turned upside down as a teenager when his father died after being accused of a crime he didn’t commit. Now, 25 years later, inspired by the adventures of Arsene Lupin, gentleman thief, he sets out to avenge his father for an injustice inflicted by a wealthy family.

Taking the bronze on the binge chart and the second spot on the rising show chart was the adult animated show “Disenchantment,” season three of which hit Netflix Jan. 15. Created by Matt Groening (“The Simpsons,” “Futurama”), the medieval fantasy series follows Bean, a rebellious and alcoholic princess, her elf companion Elfo and her “personal demon” Luci.

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TV Time is a free TV viewership tracking app that tracks consumers’ viewing habits worldwide and is visited by more than 1 million consumers every day, according to the service. The weekly “Binge Report” ranks shows with the most binge sessions. A binge session is when four or more episodes of a show are watched and tracked in the app in a given day. The “Shows on the Rise” chart is calculated by determining the week-over-week growth in episodes watched for a given program. The network displayed is the network where the show first aired (e.g. “Friends” on NBC).

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Top Binge Shows Week Ended Jan. 17 by Share of Binges:

  1. “Bridgerton” (Netflix) — 2.59%
  2. “Lupin” (Netflix) — 2.50%
  3. “Disenchantment” (Netflix) — 2.46%
  4. “Attack on Titan” (NHK) — 1.97%
  5. “Brooklyn Nine-Nine” (NBC) — 1.70%
  6. “Chilling Adventures of Sabrina” (Netflix) — 1.66%
  7. “Grey’s Anatomy” (ABC) — 1.55%
  8. “Modern Family” (ABC) — 1.39%
  9. “The Office” (NBC) — 1.39%
  10. “One Piece” (Fuji TV) — 1.34%


Top “Shows on the Rise” Week Ended Jan. 17 by Rise Ratio:

  1. “WandaVision” (Disney+) — 100%
  2. “Disenchantment” (Netflix) — 97.7%%
  3. “RuPaul’s Drag Race UK” (BBC Three) — 94.6%
  4. “Carmen Sandiego” (Netflix) — 93.8%
  5. “Servant” (Apple TV+) — 81.8%
  6. “Prodigal Son” (Fox) — 81.6%
  7. “That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime” (Tokyo MX) — 78.1%
  8. “Kemono Jihen” (Tokyo MX) — 78%
  9. “Log Horizon” (NHK) — 75.9%
  10. “The Resident” (Fox) — 75.3%

Report: Disney’s ‘WandaVision’ Tracks 1.6 Million Households Opening Weekend

Disney+ original Marvel series “WandaVision” was streamed by 1.6 million households Jan. 15-18, according to new data from Samba TV, which tracks viewer recommend program data — called Automatic Content Recognition — from more than 13.5 million smart TVs s in the United States.

The series’ first two episodes, starring Paul Bettany and Elizabeth Olson, takes characters from the Marvel Cinematic Universe and was streamed by 1.1 million collective households. About 346,000 people watched the first episode but not second, and strangely about 75,000 households watched the second episode but not the first.

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Total U.S. viewership for the two episodes, per Samba TV: Episode 1: 1.5 million households; episode 2: 1.2 million households. The show was a big draw among younger households, especially with people aged 35-44, as that age group over-indexed by +6% when compared with the U.S. viewers overall.

By comparison, Disney’s other big show, “The Mandalorian,” drew 1.04 million U.S. households for its season 2 premiere on Oct. 30., 2020. “WandaVision” drew 655,000 households on Jan. 15, the day it was added to Disney+.

Nielsen: ‘The Mandalorian’ Knocks Netflix Off Weekly SVOD Chart Top Spot

The final episode of the Disney+ original series “The Mandalorian” finally enabled the “Star Wars” spinoff to bump for the first time perennial chart topper Netflix off Nielsen’s weekly tracking (through Dec. 20) of SVOD programs streamed on the television.

The season two finale helped “The Mandalorian” generate 1.33 billion minutes streamed across 16 episodes. Previous topper “The Office” tracked 1.31 billion minutes across 192 episodes, while “The Crown” realized 772 million minutes across 40 episodes.

Regardless of “The Mandalorian” breakthrough, Netflix programming took nine of the top 10 spots in competition with Disney+, Amazon Prime Video and Hulu.

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Source: Nielsen SVOD Content Ratings (Amazon Prime, Disney+, Hulu, and Netflix), Nielsen National TV Panel, U.S. Viewing through Television.

Report: India’s SVOD Market Topped $1.4 Billion in Revenue in 2020 — Driven by Netflix & Co.

New data from Media Partners Asia found India’s subscription VOD market generated about $1.4 billion in revenue in 2020, with projections of $1.9 billion by 2025 — with 80% of the revenue generated by Netflix, Disney+ Hotstar and Amazon Prime Video. Indeed, 30% of Disney’s 88.6 million SVOD subscribers originate in India.

With 1.36 billion people, India trails just China as the most-populous country in the world. Unlike its erstwhile Communist neighbor to the East, India features open markets for SVOD highly coveted by Netflix, Disney and Amazon, among others.

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The country has been a major focus for Netflix, with the SVOD pioneer investing more than $400 million in content and infrastructure over the past two years — including adding a Hindi language option.

“Subscription based online video services benefited significantly in 2020 as the country went into the lockdown,” Mihir Shah, VP at MPA, said in a statement. “Key players are investing in premium local content while leveraging sports, movie rights and aggressive consumer pricing to drive subscriber adoption.”

MPA said YouTube remains the market leader in ad-supported VOD, accounting for 67% of total online video advertising in 2020. Its market share is expected to decline to 55% in 2025 as domestic broadcaster-backed platforms and short-form video players expand market share.

MPA estimates that online video advertising reached an estimated $909 million in 2020, down about 2% from 2019. OTT content investment reached $700 million. With budgets for original and local content acquisitions increasing, costs are projected increase by 18% annually through 2025 to $1.6 billion.

“Local premium content and sports rights will help broadcaster-backed platforms gain share,” Shah said. “Increased reach and engagement with rural millennials will improve monetization for short-form video platforms.”


‘Cobra Kai’ Surges to No. 1 on Parrot’s TV Charts, Pushing ‘Mandalorian’ to No. 2

Netflix’s “Cobra Kai” jumped to No. 1 on Parrot Analytics’ digital originals rankings for the week ended Jan. 9, and also took over the top spot on Parrot’s list of all TV shows, unseating “The Mandalorian,” which had held both spots for more than two months.

The jump comes as more people got a chance to watch the third season of the “Karate Kid” spinoff the week following its Jan 1 debut. “Cobra Kai” saw a 115% rise in demand expressions, the proprietary metric Parrot uses to gauge a show’s popularity, pushing it to 139.4 times the demand of an average TV series for the week. That’s the second-most dominant any show has been compared with other digital originals since Parrot in May 2020 switched to reporting a show’s comparison against average demand. The highest was “The Mandalorian” two weeks earlier after its second-season finale.

“Cobra Kai” previous hit the No. 1 spot for two weeks this past September, after the first two seasons moved from YouTube Premium to Netflix.

The Disney+ live-action “Star Wars” series “The Mandalorian” slipped to No. 2 on both charts, with demand expressions down 17.6% as the excitement over the recent season begins to fade. It still had 98.3 times average demand.

Netflix’s perennially popular “Stranger Things” remained at No. 3, with 50.7 times average demand and expressions up 5.4%. It was No. 8 on the overall TV show list.

“The Mandalorian” continues to give a boost to other “Star Wars” properties, most notably the animated “Star Wars: The Clone Wars,” which remained No. 4 on the digital originals chart with 42.3 times average demand, while expressions were down 11.2%.

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The biggest jump into the top 10 for the week was Netflix’s “Chilling Adventures of Sabrina,” which rose to No. 7 from No. 20 the previous week. Its fourth and final batch of eight episodes debuted Dec. 31, giving the supernatural series a 71.3% bump in demand expressions to push it to 34.9 times average demand.

A “digital original” is Parrot’s term for a multi-episode series in which the most recent season was first made available on a streaming platform such as Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Hulu or Disney+.

After “Cobra Kai” and “Mandalorian,” the No. 3 overall TV series was “SpongeBob SquarePants,” with 89.4 times average demand.

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Media Play News has teamed with Parrot Analytics to provide readers with a weekly top 10 of the most popular digital original TV series in the United States, based on the firm’s proprietary metric called Demand Expressions, which measures demand for TV content in a given market through a wide variety of data sources, including video streaming, social media activity, photo sharing, blogging, commenting on fan and critic rating platforms, and downloading and streaming via peer-to-peer protocols and file sharing sites. Results are expressed as a comparison with the average demand for a TV show of any kind in the market.

Hulu Bows $1.99 Monthly Service for College Students

Disney-owned Hulu Jan. 11 announced it is cutting the price of its $5.99 ad-supported on-demand subscription streaming video service to $1.99 for college students attending any accredited school in the U.S.

The price includes access to Hulu’s Watch Party feature enabling subscribers to watch and comment on programming with friends and family in separate locations.

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Hulu, which touted 38.8 million subs at the beginning of December, remains bundled with ESPN+ and Disney+ in a $12.99 monthly promotion. The separate Hulu with Live TV subscription service recently raised pricing 18% to $64.99 from $54.99; $70.99 for no ads.

In 2017, Hulu partnered with Spotify for a student-oriented promotion that later included Showtime as well.

Disney+ Available on LG CineBeam Projectors

LG Electronics USA has launched Disney+ on select LG CineBeam 4K Projectors, the company announced at virtual CES.

Owners of LG CineBeam Projectors HU85LA and HU70LA can subscribe to Disney+ directly through the projector’s webOS 4.5 platform on up to a 140-inch screen.

LG CineBeam is the first projector to offer access to the Disney+ app.

“Enjoying life at home has taken on a much greater role in peoples’ lives these days,” said Peggy Ang, LG USA’s VP of marketing, in a statement. “The arrival of the Disney+ app on our LG CineBeam 4K projectors provides consumers with a unique opportunity to bring the excitement of movie-going into their own home featuring the phenomenal content of Disney+ on stunning, ultra-large screens. This takes family movie night to whole new level.”

The HU70LA LG CineBeam LED Projectors feature a 4K UHD picture up to 140 inches (measured diagonally), and brightness of 1500 ANSI lumens. LG’s wheel-less technology enables each model produce an expanded color gamut with greater accuracy than traditional Digital Light Processing (DLP) projectors that use color wheels, and works to eliminate distracting visual effects such as the rainbow effect, clouding and color distortion, according to LG..

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The HU85LA CineBeam Laser Projector is LG’s first 4K Ultra Short Throw model, generating 2,700 ANSI lumens to deliver images up to 120 inches (measured diagonally) from placement of 7.2 inches away from the wall. The HU85LA also employs a wheel-less system, but uses a three-channel laser as the light source.

Pachter: PVOD Not a Threat to Theatrical

A common theme throughout the pandemic has been Hollywood’s quest to supplant theatrical releases to wary moviegoers with direct-to-consumer home entertainment options such as premium VOD and digital retail.

PVOD got an early boost last spring when Universal Pictures reported it generated $100 million releasing Trolls World Tour direct to consumers in the early days of the pandemic. The move was eyed as catalyst to jumpstarting PVOD — a distribution channel previously considered dead. Since then Warner Bros. Pictures and Disney have released high-profile movies Scoob! and Mulan on PVOD — the latter initially only to Disney+ subscribers — with little mention of revenue generated.

“The silver lining to 2020 from a theatrical perspective is that studios have had the opportunity to test the feared PVOD window, with the results not as compelling for the studios as many had expected, and not as damaging to the exhibitors as feared,” Pachter wrote in a Jan. 11 note.

Indeed, Disney made Mulan available to consumers shortly after then Disney+ exclusive, followed by release on DVD and Blu-ray Disc. Scoob! bowed on disc on July 21, 2020 — two months after its May 15 PVOD release.

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“Studios have opted to postpone major releases into 2021 and later, indicating that studios by and large prefer a theatrical release over PVOD, but will wait for a more normal environment,” Pachter wrote. “With that said, expect more films to shift to streaming as subscription services seek more content after heightened consumption coupled with several months of halted productions.”

While PVOD revenue remains largely a guarded secret by studios, the so-called “dynamic windows” ironed out between Universal Pictures, AMC Theatres and Cinemark, affording exhibitors a cut in digital revenue appears a better business model for all parties during the pandemic.

Under the deal movies with opening weekends over $50 million remain in theaters for 31 days (five weekends) and smaller films stay in theaters at least 17 days (three weekends), with a simultaneous theatrical/PVOD window for the remainder of the window (with downstream windows unaffected).

“We see the Cinemark-Universal model of to be the model on which most negotiations will be based in the coming months,” Pachter wrote. “We think this is the best solution for exhibitors, assuming the PVOD release is constructed as a revenue share between studios and exhibitors.”


Disney+ Launching in Singapore on Feb. 23

Disney is expected to rollout its branded Disney+ SVOD service in Singapore on Feb. 23, in a partnership with local cable TV operator StarHub. The platform reportedly will launch with access to 500 movies and 15,000 episodes of content from Marvel, Disney, Star Wars, National Geographic, Pixar and Star in India. Pricing information has not been released.

Disney+ had 86.8 million subscribers in early December, with 30% of the sub base originating via Star, the Indian streaming platform Disney acquired through the acquisition of 20th Century Fox assets.

“We are excited to be the first and only fully-integrated quad-play service provider to raise the entertainment bar for our customers with Disney+, home to some of the most recognizable cultural brands in the world today,” Johan Buse, head of StarHub’s consumer business group, said in a statement. “With the growing ubiquity of ultra-responsive 5G, our customers will be able to experience true mobility and freedom, enjoying the freshest entertainment at the highest quality anytime, anywhere and on any screen.”

Disney+ bowed on Nov. 12, 2019 in the U.S., Holland, Australia and New Zealand. A second rollout in select Western European countries occurred last March, with India and Indonesia following. Rollout into Eastern Europe and other parts of Asia is on the schedule this year.

Disney+ Content Curator Ricky Strauss Leaving

Ricky Strauss, president of programming and content curation for Disney+ and Hulu, is leaving. Strauss, who has been with Disney for nine years, reportedly is leaving on his own accord following senior management changes. His position will be assumed by Joe Earley, who reports to Michael Paull, president of Disney+ and ESPN+.

In the restructuring last year, Strauss had seen his position overseeing original content for Disney+ moved to Disney Studios. After some consideration, Strauss decided to move on, according to a staff memo from Rebecca Campbell, Disney’s chairman of Direct-to-Consumer & International.

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“Ricky has been an incredibly creative, dedicated leader and friend to so many of us at Disney,” Campbell wrote. “Ricky’s leadership of the Disney+ Content & Marketing efforts leading up to and following the launch of Disney+ has been remarkable — and we are so appreciative of his expertise, passion and care.”

Strauss, who thanked Campbell, Kareem Daniel, Chairman, Disney Media and Entertainment Distribution, Disney CEO Bob Chapek and Executive Chairman Bob Iger for their understanding of his personal decision to leave, said it had been “a privilege” to help create and launch Disney+ in November 2019.

“None of this would have been possible without the company’s thoughtful risk-taking and strong focus on creating dynamic entertainment and value for our consumers,” he wrote.