Entertainment & Content

Variety Explores the Future of Entertainment

Variety is participating in official CES 2021 Partner Programming on January 14. Register now and see the Variety Entertainment Summit.

Overview Variety Entertainment Summit is set to return to CES 2021 to examine the technology, trends and innovations driving the future of film, television, games, audience engagement and more.

Technology and innovation joined forces to reinvent an entertainment industry ravaged by the effects of 2020. Despite hardships for many business sectors, it was also a year of transformation and opportunity. Production shutdowns and audience behaviors drastically changed by the pandemic drove showbiz leaders to find new strategies and tactics to reimagine both content and the way they engaged viewers. Streaming, social media and games became ever more important. How did their response impact the industry?

As the way audiences consumed media changed, marketers faced challenges in finding meaningful ways to connect with viewers. Creatives and advertisers could not ignore the voices of communities around the world demanding to be heard. A focus on fan engagement was one response. Immersive experiences and building cultural connections are among key components in helping to engage audiences and build brand loyalty across sectors including film, television, digital media and games.

As we step into 2021, Variety examines the trends, tools and technology at the disposal of those leading the way and gives you a glimpse of the year ahead. Join the Variety team at the 2021 Variety Entertainment Summit: A CES Partner Program to learn more.

Envisioning the Future

Success is rarely achieved without experimentation and risk. Amid the challenges of 2020 —pandemic, elections and calls for awareness of racial inequality on a global level — are stories of pivoting, innovation and growth. Recent Variety Intelligence Platform industry analysis revealed the biggest winners in terms of market capitalization change from March to December 2020 were Roku (+296%), Apple (+111%) and ViacomCBS (+111%). Tech and streaming-focused companies won big, but can they sustain those gains?

As we look toward a year of emerging from the pandemic as well as watching people worldwide attempting to get “back to normal,” how will audiences choose to consume media? Will digi-nets like MeTV or linear streaming platforms like Pluto TV with classic reruns lose their feel-good allure? Will audiences warm up to premium video on demand (PVOD) and subscription video on demand (SVOD) or will ad-based video on demand (AVOD) rise to the surface reflecting viewers’ response to personal economic realities?

As of this writing, COVID-19 cases on film and television productions continue to rise. Cities are on lockdown again. The aforementioned hidden gems are eclipsed by the fact that two-thirds of networks saw viewership decline at a time when most people were trapped inside their homes. What does this mean for cable television — or television in general? Will there be a reckoning?

Truth and Thought Leadership Matter

At the Variety Entertainment Summit at CES 2021, Variety’s editorial team will guide the day’s conversations bringing you insights, information and analysis characteristic of its award-winning news coverage and answer the questions brought on by the past year as the entertainment industry looks forward.

Interviews led by Variety editors, reporters and analysts bring attendees knowledge and expertise indispensable to understanding the complex shifts in the industry today.

Don’t miss the January 14 Variety Entertainment Summit.  Register Here.

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