Steven Spielberg attends the 55th Annual Motion Picture Audio Society Awards at the InterContinental Hotel in Downtown Los Angeles, CA on February 16, 2019.
Matt Winkelmeier | Getty Images Entertainment | Getty Images
Warner Bros. Discovery The company is calling on a think tank of filmmakers to help guide the planning and programming of its cable channel Turner Classic Films after a management shakeup left fans concerned about the channel’s future.
“Jaws” director Steven Spielberg, “Goodfellas” director Martin Scorsese and “Boogie Nights” filmmaker Paul Thomas Anderson formally announced their plans for a joint venture, TCM and filmmakers said Wednesday. Contracted to provide input to TCM. The filmmaker will work closely with Warner Bros. Film Group CEO Mike De Luca and Pam Abdy on a series of layoffs at TCM, according to the company. After a reorganization with the management, they oversee the curation and programming.
“We’ve started discussing ideas with Mike and Pam, who are true movie buffs who share a passion and reverence for the classics that are hallmarks of the TCM community,” the three filmmakers said in a joint statement Wednesday. stated in the statement. “This unique arrangement was initiated by David Zaslav and reflects his commitment to respecting the legacy of TCM, while also involving us in the curation and planning.”
The filmmaker was also included after staff at Warner Bros. Discovery faced another round of layoffs last week, particularly at its cable network portfolio.
Part of that is a major shakeup at TCM, which is considered the place to preserve classic movies and enhance its curated lineup with guest star introductions. The changes have drawn the attention of film lovers and those working for film preservation, who have taken to social media to voice their distress.
The filmmakers also paid tribute to longtime programming executive Charles Tabesh, who initially left in the reshuffle but will remain with the network.
David Zaslav, CEO of Warner Bros. Discovery.
Anjali Sundaram | CNBC Money
Last week, the filmmakers said in a statement that Zaslav contacted them and assured them they were committed to working with the company for the future of TCM.
Since the merger of Warner Bros. and Discovery Channel in 2022, the company has been implementing several cost-cutting initiatives, including layoffs and cutting content spending.
In the months leading up to the layoffs and changes at TCM and other stations, Zaslav and Spielberg held conversations about TCM’s future, according to a person familiar with the matter. Zaslav also initiated conversations with Spielberg, Scorsese and Anderson last week.
According to media reports, Spielberg, Anderson and Zaslav participated in a panel on film preservation during the TCM Classics Film Festival in April.
Warner Bros. Discovery and its film executives have recently touted the company’s increased investment in traditional Chinese medicine.
“TCM is a cultural treasure, and WBD is committed to protecting, supporting and investing in the future. This year, TCM’s investment in content has grown by 30 percent, and we plan to build on this in the years to come,” a company spokesperson said in a statement. middle. “That said, TCM is not immune to very real pressures across the linear ecosystem, but we’ve taken steps to ensure we stay true to the network’s mission of getting more movies, driving content investment, and preserving and protecting film culture. “
The increased investment will be used to license new films and bring a broader lineup to the network, according to people familiar with the matter.