Cable Exec: A la Carte Poses a Threat to Hollywood’s Creative Community

Sep 24, 2013  •  Post A Comment

A leading cable executive issued a scathing assessment of the a la carte programming model. Appearing in Beverly Hills at the media event TheGrill, FX Networks CEO John Landgraf said a la carte poses a threat to the Hollywood creative community, the cable industry and consumers, TheWrap.com reports.

Said Landgraf: “I think it’s a risk to the whole ecosystem.” The executive added that half the jobs in Hollywood would disappear if the current model gave way.

“If that happened, you’d see the greatest recession in the history of Hollywood," he said.

"While he acknowledged ‘a certain amount of genuine consumer irritation’ over the current cable model and its resultant prices, he insisted that it’s still a relatively cheap form of entertainment compared to other forms of entertainment and that the current way of doing business is essential to a financially viable entertainment industry," the story reports.

Added Landgraf: “There are a lot of interested parties that would like to see the system fall apart (but) it’s just a really efficient economic model.”

And: “If you look at the town we sit in and all of the agencies and all of the people in these agencies … they’re dependent on this model. They’re absolutely dependent on this model."

From a consumer standpoint, Landgraf said, the loss of revenue from pay-TV subscriptions would hit the funding of programming, leading to “more homes paying higher prices for fewer channels.”

Here’s a taste of what Landgraf had to say:


  1. Exactly the point! I don’t want to pay for shows I don’t want to watch and I don’t wish to have my money spent producing shows against my believes. It’s called the free market system and it has been a long time since the consumer has had a voice. Hollywood worried, it’s about damn time!

  2. Rather than fight this, Hollywood should be looking for ways to solve the problem. I no longer subscribe to cable and pay Way less to Netflix and Amazon for the shows I want to watch. I am not going to support networks that I have never watched and never will watch.

  3. In Mr. Landgraf’s world you would be required to buy a set of tires to get a tune up and have to buy the cauliflower to buy a bunch of broccoli! Reminds me of a scene where Jack Nicholson wanted to buy toast!

  4. What Mr. Landgraf and many of the commenters here don’t seem to realize is this… this aspect of the reality (of the world at large), is that it isn’t an either/or world.
    There is no reason there can’t be both ala carte programming (to serve those who want individual channels) and bundled programming (for those who want all they can get for the best price).
    And there’s still a third option.
    A combination of the two… for those who want bundles of all of a certain type of programming (say HGTV, DIY and similar channels that come with those two) and certain individual channels (say ESPN and Speed). Yeah… this kinda a guy wish list.

  5. Guess what buddy? It’s ala carte or NO cart. There are increasing numbers of cable cutters and you have been way too slow to adapt. Heard of Netflix. Hulu, Apple TV, Roku, Amazon VOD etc.? Innovator’s Dilemma? Remember the music industry? Remember Local TV? Yes, theirs is coming too. Watch for it.

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