Samba TV: Viewers Love Football, ‘Black Widow’ — Less So ‘Fauci’

In a streaming world, the National Football League on pay-TV still resonates over Hollywood. New data from Samba TV found that 2.1 U.S. households watched the “NFL London Game” on Oct. 10 featuring the Atlanta Falcons and New York Jets on NBC, NFL Network and Sky Sports Action. Another 291,000 British households watched the game won by the Falcons.

Samba, which tracks more than 46 million opted-in TVs globally, of which 28 million are in the U.S. across 210 designated market areas (DMAs), found that U.S. viewership skewed affluent ($100K+), slightly male (+2%), white (+7%) and black (+19%). Of the top 25 largest DMAs, Atlanta over-indexed the most (+462%), followed by New York (+254%) and Philadelphia (+41%).

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Meanwhile, 1.1 million U.S. households; 190,000 British households, 96,000 German households and 8,000 Austrian households streamed Black Widow on Disney+, starting Oct 6. The U.S. audience skewed younger (44 and below), slightly white (+3%), slightly Asian (+2%). Of the top 25 largest DMAs, Raleigh, NC over-indexed the most (+46%), followed by Seattle (+38%) and Portland, Ore., (+35%).

Finally, 14,000 U.S. households streamed “Fauci,” the documentary on infectious diseases expert Dr. Anthony Fauci on Disney+, beginning Oct. 6. All countries’ audiences were too small for geographic or demo breakouts.

Doc ‘Fauci’ Streaming on Disney+ Oct. 6

Fauci, a feature documentary about the U.S. government’s infectious disease advisor Dr. Anthony Fauci, M.D., will premiere on Disney+ Oct. 6.

The film debuted in select theaters in the United States Sept. 10.

The documentary delivers a glimpse into the long-standing professional career and personal life of the public servant, who after a lifetime of service faced his biggest test: a pandemic whose ferocity is unmatched in modern history. Dr. Anthony Fauci became a cultural icon during the COVID-19 pandemic. But that has come at a cost as he has also faced attacks from adversaries in a nation increasingly divided by political party lines.

A world-renowned infectious disease specialist and the longest-serving public health leader in Washington, D.C., who has served under seven presidents, Dr. Fauci has overseen the U.S. response to 40 years’ worth of outbreaks, including HIV/AIDS, SARS and Ebola. Crafted around unprecedented access to Dr. Fauci, National Geographic Documentary Films’ Fauci is a revealing and intimate portrait of the man mostly known only from appearances on the news.

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The film features insights from former President George W. Bush, Bill Gates, Bono, former national security advisor Susan Rice, National Institutes of Health director Dr. Francis Collins, former Centers for Disease Control and Prevention director Dr. Tom Frieden, journalists Laurie Garrett and The New York Times’ Apoorva Mandavilli, and key AIDS activists, among others. Dr. Fauci’s family, friends and former patients also provide more personal commentary about the man, his personality, and what makes him who he is.

“As an activist, I think I’ll be tangling with Tony Fauci for the rest of my life, but I’ll never doubt his commitment to public health, nor his profound decency and humanity,” Peter Staley, film subject and founding member of ACT UP, said in a statement.

National Geographic Documentary Films previously released the Academy Award, BAFTA and seven-time Emmy Award-winning film Free Solo and the Academy Award-nominated film The Cave.

AMC CEO Aron: ‘Godzilla vs. Kong’ Quintupled 2021 Revenue in Five Days; Says Studios Moving Back to Shorter Theatrical Window

Warner Bros./Legendary Entertainment’s Godzilla vs. Kong opening box office in the U.S. continues to resonate throughout the industry. The actioner generated $48.5 million across five days, sending its global haul near $300 million. For AMC Theatres, the world’s largest exhibitor, the clash of cinematic monsters has been a godsend.

“If you look at our opening performance from Wednesday to Sunday, our business at AMC was five times, quintuple, what we have done in all the weekends before that in 2021,” AMC CEO Adam Aron told Fox Business Network’s “The Claman Countdown.”

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With daily vaccinations in the U.S. rising exponentially, Aron was told that Dr. Anthony Fauci, the federal government’s infectious diseases expert, had told a separate podcast that at current vaccination levels, movie theaters could be operating at full capacity by the end of the year.

“Well, obviously, we’re so excited when we can lift capacity caps, when we can take masks off,” Aron said. “We’re keeping our 50% capacity caps in place. We’re keeping mask-wearing for now. And we are going to run our theaters this summer with the tightest safety standards we can.”

Aron said more than 10 million moviegoers have frequented AMC Theatres in the past several months, and he hasn’t heard of one documented case of the coronavirus being transmitted in AMC theaters.

“That’s very good news that our safety protocols are working,” he said.

With Disney slated to launch Cruella and Black Widow in theaters and on Disney+ (for a $29.99 add-on price) concurrently on May 28 and July 9, respectively, Aron was asked if the exhibitor has come to a distribution agreement with the Magical Kingdom.

Aron said Hollywood studios are re-thinking their simultaneous theatrical/streaming movie debuts, with Warner set to return to a shortened window (45 days, according to Aron) in 2022. The studio is releasing all 2021 theatrical titles concurrently on the HBO Max SVOD service. Universal Pictures has a revenue-sharing deal with AMC that enables it distribute movies into consumer homes 17 days after their box office debut depending on ticket sales.

“Universal, who’s a big advocate for this simultaneous release on the same day at home that movies hit theaters — they abandoned that concept,” Aron said. “I have every expectation that we will find a happy middle ground with Disney that’s good for Disney shareholders and good for AMC shareholders too.”