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Apple's multimillion-dollar Christmas Carol deal is bad for the future of streaming

[2019.10.09, Wed 22:05] Apple is getting into the holiday spirit, but the deal it made for a star-studded Christmas Carol musical to premiere on its streaming service, Apple TV+, could leave other streaming services saying, "Bah, humbug!". The tech company reportedly won an intense bidding war for a musical version of Charles Dickens' holiday classic A Christmas Carol that will feature Will Ferrell and Ryan Reynolds as both stars and producers, topping the offers made by industry-leading streaming competitor Netflix, as well as traditional studios Warner Bros. While the numbers involved in the deal are massive by industry standards and hint at the financial advantage Apple has - and is willing to wield - over other streaming services, it's not entirely unheard of for streaming content creators to earn big paydays. What might be more troubling than the financial bar raised by Apple are the arrangements that were also reported to be on the table in the deal for Ferrell and Reynolds' Christmas Carol. Although Apple reportedly ended up retaining the music rights to the Christmas Carol musical, the fact that this was even on the table suggests that we'll be seeing a lot more of this kind of provision - and the aforementioned shift in the film's copyrights - when high-profile filmmakers negotiate with streaming studios. The more money that streaming services throw at projects like the Christmas Carol musical, the more those streaming subscription costs will need to increase to offset those expenses. Given how early it is in Apple's tenure as a streaming video provider - the Apple TV+ service doesn't launch until November - it's clear that the company wants to make a big splash.
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