People/Biz

Your take on 2018: Big Fish’s Dan Cesareo and Cineflix’s Dave Hamilton

As 2018 is drawing to a close, once again, realscreen is offering industry professionals from around the globe the chance to sound off about the year that was by taking ...
December 17, 2018

As 2018 is drawing to a close, once again, realscreen is offering industry professionals from around the globe the chance to sound off about the year that was by taking part in our annual year-end reader’s survey. Online, and in the upcoming January/February issue of realscreen, we’ll be featuring some of your responses.

Dan Cesareo, founder and president, Big Fish Entertainment
Dan Cesareo
My favorite factual program/series (or feature documentary) of 2018 was:
This year it was a tie between two polar opposites. Nailed It! made me laugh. And Flint Town was depressing, but amazing.

I never thought they’d make a program about:
People tattooing vulgar things on each other…wait, we make that show (How Far is Tattoo Far?).

The program/series/doc people will be talking about in five years is:
It’ll be less about one particular program, and more the entire genre of live unscripted content.

The most positive development in the non-fiction/unscripted content industry this past year was:
The non-linear programming arms race.

The most troubling development in the non-fiction/unscripted content industry this past year was:
The acceleration of cord cutting.

The idea I’m happiest to have had this year was:
Joining MGM.

If 2018 taught me one thing it was:
Take risks.

The buzzword I don’t want to hear in 2019 is:
The phrase “our version of…” I’d rather be original.

My New Year’s resolution for 2019 is:
Be present in the moment.

Dave Hamilton, EVP, development, Cineflix Productions
David Hamilton_Cineflix

My favorite factual program/series (or feature documentary) of 2018 was:
The Zen Diaries of Garry Shandling. Alternately hilarious, frustrating, and heartbreaking.

I never thought they’d make a program about:
One of the more inspiring things about our industry is the ability of our storytellers to tell stories that seem impossible to crack. I never thought there would be a live show about crowdsourcing medical ailments (M.D. Live), but I’m excited to see how TNT and Lionsgate figure it out!

The program/series/doc people will be talking about in five years is:
Minding the Gap. With the explosion of video camera usage over the past decade, program creators and filmmakers will continue to be presented with opportunities to mine years worth of existing footage to create new projects.

In 18 months, no one will be talking about:
Production clocks. Well, perhaps a tad longer than 18 months, but content is going to continue to migrate toward a running length that suits story more than it does existing, rigid program slots.

The best factual content I’ve seen online this year was:
Wild Wild Country.

The most positive development in the non-fiction/unscripted content industry this past year was:
The diversification of digital buyers. With the addition of AT&T, Disney, Warner, and Quibi to the existing FAANGs, the landscape for digital sales is hopefully trending toward what we saw in the heyday of linear sales.

The most troubling development in the non-fiction/unscripted content industry this past year was:
Some networks’ over-reliance on reboots.

The idea I wish I thought of was:
Border Live.

The idea I’m happiest to have had this year was:
You’ll have to wait for the announcement!

If 2018 taught me one thing it was:
Long, multi-step development deals and committee-led, risk-averse decision processes don’t lead to higher ratings, and in fact, keep fresh ideas stalled off-screen.

The buzzword I don’t want to hear in 2019 is:
“Sticky.”

My New Year’s resolution for 2019 is:
Great ideas are worth fighting for.

About The Author
Senior staff writer Frederick Blichert comes to realscreen with a background as a journalist and freelance film critic. He has previously written for VICE, Paste Magazine, Senses of Cinema, Xtra, Canadian Cinematographer and elsewhere. He holds a Master of Arts in film studies from Carleton University and a Master of Journalism from the University of British Columbia.

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