Crime, Sci-Fi and Comedy dominate 2023’s global streaming bill of $42bn

The major global streaming platforms (Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Disney+, Apple TV+, Paramount+ and Max/HBO Max) will invest $42bn in original and acquired film and TV content this year, the latest Ampere Analysis forecasts suggest. This marks a slower rate of growth of 7% year-on-year, compared to the 24% growth in streaming spending witnessed in 2022. High-budget Originals in key scripted genres including Crime & Thriller, Sci-Fi & Fantasy and Comedy continue to be the primary drivers of growth. However, in light of intense competition and the influence of macroeconomic factors, SVoD platforms will prioritise cost management and effective content acquisitions to thrive in 2024 and beyond. Scripted Original titles take centre stage in streamers’ content strategies Of the $42bn in SVoD content spend dedicated to TV series and films, 90% is for scripted. Crime & Thriller tops SVoD spending, with investment expected to hit $12bn this year. Sci-Fi & Fantasy and Comedy genres also command substantial funds, emphasising that high-budget Scripted TV content remains the most powerful tool for attracting subscriptions and maintaining subscriber engagement. At a platform level, 2 Ampere Analysis 2023 © Netflix and Amazon Prime Video adopt a balanced approach to genre allocation, leveraging their scale to cater to the preferences of diverse demographics. Other SVoD players are pursuing more targeted spending strategies, focusing on key genres and IP to cultivate loyal subscriber bases. Apple TV+ dedicates 40% of its spend budget to Crime & Thriller titles, building on past successes such as Slow Horses and Severance. Disney+ has prioritised Sci-Fi & Fantasy and Children & Family genres, anchored by TV spin-offs from the Star Wars, MCU and Pixar franchises. From Talk to Dating, streamers turn to Unscripted content as budgets tighten Streamers are increasingly turning to Entertainment and Reality as their budgets tighten and they search for subscriber engagement at a lower cost. Spending on Unscripted content by SVoD platforms is set to hit $4.9bn this year, growing by 22% year-on-year, vastly outpacing the overall rise in spending by global streamers. An initial focus on Documentaries has expanded to encompass Entertainment and Reality, with a particular focus on both producing and acquiring Dating, Talk show and Game show formats. Content acquisition spend will rebound in 2024, after falling by 11% since 2021 Exclusive original titles have fuelled the growth of content budgets for global SVoD platforms, accounting for 67% of film and TV spend in 2023. However, the spotlight is shifting towards content acquisition strategies, poised to play an increasingly vital role. Content acquisition spend for major SVoD platforms is projected to grow by 5% next year, reaching $14.8bn. Crime, Romance, and Drama genres lead in acquired content spending, offering substantial potential for cross-border content licensing. In pursuit of cost-effective library expansion, compounded by industry strikes in the USA, SVoD 3 Ampere Analysis 2023 © platforms are looking to success stories like NBCUniveral's Suits and HBO shows Band of Brothers and Insecure on Netflix. Neil Anderson, Senior Analyst at Ampere Analysis says: “In 2023, we forecast that major global SVoD platforms will collectively invest $42bn in film and TV content. The moderated spending growth rate in comparison to previous years, underscores the maturity of the SVoD market and the importance of strategic spending across genres. At $15 billion, Netflix will retain its position as the top investor in global streaming content, albeit with a modest 2% increase. Meanwhile, rivals such as Disney+, Paramount+, and Apple TV+ are poised for more substantial budget expansions, projecting year-on-year increases exceeding 10%.”

Netflix announces documentary series on fastest athletes on earth

Netflix has announced the upcoming production of a groundbreaking sports documentary series titled "Chasing the Speed: World Sprinters." This series will provide an unprecedented glimpse into the lives of top sprinters from around the globe as they strive to become the fastest athletes on Earth."Chasing the Speed: World Sprinters" takes viewers on an exhilarating journey into the hearts and minds of elite athletes hailing from nations including the United States, Jamaica, the United Kingdom, Ivory Coast, Kenya, and Italy. This gripping six-episode series offers an exclusive behind-the-scenes exploration of the intense training, high-stakes competitions, and unyielding mental fortitude that define the world of professional sprinting. As these dedicated sprinters dedicate their lives to shaving off precious fractions of a second, they prepare to cross the finish line in record time, where victory and destiny await.Viewers can anticipate the premiere of "Chasing the Speed: World Sprinters" in the sizzling Summer of 2024. The series will consist of six exhilarating 45-minute episodes, each providing an in-depth and captivating look into the world of sprinting.The series is brought to life by the acclaimed production company Box to Box Films, known for its exceptional work on other sports documentaries such as "Full Swing," "Drive to Survive," and "Break Point.""Chasing the Speed: World Sprinters" boasts an impressive lineup of executive producers, including Paul Martin, James Gay-Rees, and Warren Smith of Box to Box Films. Their creative vision and commitment to authenticity promise to deliver a captivating and compelling narrative.World Athletics President Sebastian Coe expressed his enthusiasm for the series, stating: "We’re delighted that Netflix has chosen to turn a spotlight onto the lives of the fastest people on Earth. It takes a special talent, both physically and mentally, to succeed in a world where your fate is decided in just ten seconds. As Muhammad Ali said: 'The fight is won or lost far away from the witnesses, behind the lines, in the gym and out there on the road, long before I dance under those lights.' The same applies to our athletes, and we can think of no better partner than Netflix to give our fans new insight into the fascinating high-intensity world of sprinters as they prepare to take their shot at glory at the World Championships."

Hares Studios & ATL join forces for their first joint Arab production: Transit

In a groundbreaking collaboration, Hares Studios and ATL - A Zee Network Enterprise proudly present their first co-production, "Transit," a captivating Pan-Arab series that marks the debut production of Hares Studios. The series, a first of its kind, was entirely produced in the UAE, showcasing the region's immense creative potential.Inspired by the famous Zee series "Chupke Chupke," "Transit" was adapted by Syrian writer Lujain Khalaf and directed by Bassem Salka. The series stars Nadine Tahseen Beik, Haval Hamdi, Jihad Saad, Nadine Khoury, Badih Abou Chakra, Jalal Shamoot, Nazli Rawas, Nora Rahaal, and Moayad Al-Kharat, alongside actors from Egypt, Sudan, Jordan, and the UAE due to Dubai's geographical significance, which attracts people from various nationalities worldwide.The series follows the journey of a couple who embark on a journey, only to encounter unexpected events along the way. It offers a captivating blend of romance, drama, and human experiences intertwined with a mysterious murder that unfolds throughout the story. In a statement, director Basem Salka said, 'The series dives into the bustling city of Dubai, where love and relationships break free from social norms, shaped by circumstances and emotions of individuals, as they interact with their surroundings."Transit" was shot using advanced technology cameras, meticulously selected locations that reflect the pace of modern life in Dubai. This series serves as a testament to Hares Studios and ATL's commitment to delivering top-notch productions that captivate audiences worldwide. Manoj Abraham Mathew, EVP and Territory Head of Zee Entertainment, “This is our 7th production of Arabic originals, and we have a slate of 5 productions on the floor with another one with Hares Studios signed. Also, as an Executive Producer of this series, it is a matter of pride that we could do our entire filming in UAE, with majority of the locations being in Dubai. Ammar very successfully assembled a stellar cast and crew. This country and region have exceptional creative talent and at Zee we would love to continue to nurture and invest in this.”Ammar Hares, CEO of Hares Studios, expresses his enthusiasm for the project, stating "We are thrilled to present 'Transit,' our debut production at Hares Studios, and we are incredibly proud to partner with ATL for this endeavor. This marks a significant milestone for us as we venture into productions and redefine entertainment with powerful storytelling from the Arab region."Hares Studios, founded in 2022, aims to be a leading entertainment company with a global vision, sharing captivating stories from the Arab region and attracting audiences from all over the world while highlighting the richness of Middle Eastern cultures, traditions, and artistic works.

Khaled Ameen, Hussain AlMahdi & Rawan Mahdi star in Netflix’s new Kuwaiti show '

Netflix is bringing a brand new Arabic dramedy series to screens this September, with the launch of 'The Cage'. The light-hearted Kuwaiti show stars several beloved Kuwaiti stars including Khaled Ameen, Hussain AlMahdi, Rawan Mahdi, Lamya Tareq and Hessah AlNabhan, showcasing more stories from the Arab world to global audiences.Khaled Ameen plays a social counselor who is working with a married couple, played by Hussain AlMahdi & Rawan Mahdi, to address their differences and better understand each other’s perspective to save their marriage. While the counselor is helping them reconnect, he’s facing his struggles in his personal life, too. Following the couple and the evolution of their relationship across 10 years, the 8-episode dramedy is a fresh take on tackling marital challenges in Arab drama, in a lighthearted and relatable way.The Cage, which is produced by Abdullah Boushahri and directed by Jasem Almuhanna, will be available on 23rd of September, only on Netflix.The Cage is the next milestone in Netflix’s journey in the region as it continues to invest in amplifying the voices of more Arab storytellers. The Cage is just the beginning for Netflix series in Kuwait, with another high-profile project in the works that promises to deliver a fresh perspective, exciting twists and turns and some beloved, familiar faces.

Amazon Freevee Brings Back The Suze Orman Show With an Exclusive Licensing Deal

Amazon Freevee announced a two-year licensing deal to bring back all 14 seasons of The Suze Orman Show. The deal includes multi-territory streaming rights including the U.S., UK, and Germany—with exclusive on-demand and FAST channel rights to the full library of 592 episodes of the iconic financial advice series. Starting today, 207 episodes will be released, with more episodes of The Suze Orman Show rolling out each month until the end of the year in the U.S. The series will be available on Amazon Freevee in the UK later this year, and in Germany next year. “Suze Orman is one of the most respected and recognized experts in personal finance. As viewers around the world seek answers to their questions about money management and the global economy, we couldn’t think of a better moment to make this show available—or a better partner than Suze,” said Lauren Anderson, head of AVOD Original content and programming at Amazon Studios. “We are honored she chose Amazon Freevee as the new, long-awaited destination to exclusively stream The Suze Orman Show—allowing audiences free access to the evergreen wisdom and practical advice she has shared with millions throughout the years.”“You should be so thrilled that Freevee is bringing back all episodes of The Suze Orman Show, because it gave financial freedom to millions of people,” said Suze Orman. “Freevee is the perfect new home for my show because it’s completely free of charge, so of course YOU ARE APPROVED to watch it!”  The Suze Orman ShowThe Suze Orman Show helps people make the connection between self-worth and net worth. In a format that's fast-paced, down-to-earth, and entertaining, Suze Orman candidly tells her audience the truth about money so viewers can change the course of their financial destiny—to be more and to have more.Amazon Freevee, formerly IMDb TVAmazon Freevee is a free ad-supported streaming video service with thousands of premium movies and TV shows, including Originals and FAST channels, available anytime, for free.Expansive Catalog: Amazon Freevee offers viewers ambitious Originals, including Bosch: Legacy; Emmy-winning court program Judy Justice; reality design series Hollywood Houselift with Jeff Lewis; comedy series Sprung; music documentary Post Malone: Runaway; heist drama Leverage: Redemption; spy thriller Alex Rider; and the sports docuseries UNINTERRUPTED’s Top Class: The Life and Times of the Sierra Canyon Trailblazers. Combined with an always updating library of broadly appealing hit movies and TV shows across a wide selection of genres, and a catalog of more than 100 FAST channels, Freevee delivers customers the content they would expect to see on a paid service.Free: The entire catalog of content on the service is free. No paid subscriptions necessary.Limited Ads: Freevee provides customers highly sought content supported by limited advertising.Instant Access: On Prime Video, Freevee is available within the “Free with Ads” tab, “Live TV” tab, or through the “Popular Movies and TV – Free with Ads” carousel. Freevee is also available as an app on third party devices including Roku, Samsung smart TVs (2017-2021 models), Apple TV 4K, Apple TV HD, Comcast’s Xfinity Flex, Xfinity X1, Chromecast with Google TV, NVIDIA SHIELD and other Android TV devices, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 5 consoles, as well as LG Smart TVs (2018-2021 models). The app is also available on iPhone, iPad, and Android mobile devices.To learn more about Amazon Freevee, visit and follow @AmazonFreevee.

ZEE5 Global partners with LuLu Group in the Middle East for their “India Utsav”

 ZEE5 Global, the world’s largest streaming platform for South Asian content, has partnered with the LuLu Group for their India Utsav celebrations. The announcement was made in a press conference at LuLu Regional Headquarters in Dubai. In the Group’s first ever simultaneous region-wide launch of its celebration of the 75th Indian Independence Day - Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav, the “India Utsav” was launched at the same time across the GCC countries on 15th August 2022, Monday at Al Wahda Mall, Abu Dhabi. The festival was inaugurated by H.E. Sunjay Sudhir Indian Ambassador to the UAE, alongside Mr. Yusuff Ali, Chairman and Managing Director of LuLu Group International, Archana Anand, Chief Business Officer of ZEE5 Global, the official partners of this promotion, and other top officials and government authorities at LuLu Hypermarket Al Wahda Mall, Abu Dhabi. “India Utsav” is a retail festival that brings alive the 3 Cs of the Indian experience at LuLu: Culture, Commerce and Cuisine. It showcases the close commercial ties UAE enjoys with India. In celebration of 75 Years of Indian Independence, the "India Utsav" will present a unique immersive shopping experience at LuLu with regional food trails, celebrity visits organised by ZEE5 Global and amazing promotions & Offers on every category from fresh food to grocery to lifestyle and fashion wear in time for the festive season to follow. ZEE5 GLOBAL PARTNERHSIPThis year, LuLu has partnered with ZEE5 Global, the world’s largest platform for South Asian entertainment. As part of the initiative, ZEE5 will be flying in popular actor Sonali Bendre to meet and greet with fans in the UAE. Shoppers at LuLu Hypermarkets across the GCC will also win a free annual subscription to ZEE5’s for every purchase of AED 1,000 and above; and a free one-month subscription or a 50% discount on yearly subscription for every purchase of AED 100 and above.  Speaking on the occasion H.E. Sunjay Sudhir said, “We are delighted to note that LuLu Group is celebrating the India Utsav across all their stores on the historic occasion of Azadi Ka Amritmahotsav and I thank LuLu Group for always promoting India and Indian products through their hypermarkets. No doubt initiatives such as this will go a long way further promoting the trade ties between India and UAE.” Mr. Yusuff Ali said, “Needless to say, India is very close to my heart and mind emotionally. On the occasion of the 75th Independence Day, I would say that the country is an emerging economic superpower, and the visionary foreign policy of PM Modi has led to stronger India-GCC ties and the UAE is emerging as one of India’s staunch business partners. I believe strongly that the LuLu Group can be a key player in this vision of the future for India.” “Apart from product promotion, India Utsav will also showcase rich cultural diversity of India through many shows, competitions and celebrity visits during the campaign period,” added V. Nandakumar, Director of Marketing & Communications, LuLu Group. Speaking on the occasion, Archana Anand, Chief Business Officer, ZEE5 Global said, “It’s a highly exciting time for ZEE5 Global as we have galloped ahead to become the No.1 streaming platform for South Asian content across multiple global markets, including the Middle East. We now look forward to continuing to build on this success through multiple local initiatives and on the back of our compelling content, further deepening our connection with South-Asian audiences here, we are thrilled to partner with LuLu for their India Utsav celebrations. This marks the continuation of a wonderful and deep relationship with them, and with the region.” Key highlights: Special stalls to promote Indian handicrafts, khadi products, Kashmir products, etc.Indian Food Festival to showcase different state cuisines and snacks.Daily cultural shows and competitions.Free subscriptions of ZEE5. KICKING OFF INDIAN FESTIVALS  “India Utsav” will herald LuLu’s celebration also of India’s busy festival months with a series of celebrations, LuLu India Utsav Deals for Indian Independence Day (from Aug 11th – Aug 17th), Janmashtami Specials (Aug 17th – Aug 18th), Ganesh Chaturthi (Aug 25th – Aug 30th), Onam (Aug 30th to Sept 8th), Navratri – (Sept & Oct), and culminating with Diwali (End of Oct).