Written By
Max Brown

07.19.17

Silicon Beach: Where Entertainment Meets Tech?

Prior to gaining status as a tech hub, Silicon Beach already had other strong industries, most notably entertainment. We have enough established and independent studios to be a creative powerhouse. Because of this, Los Angeles is uniquely positioned to capitalize on innovations on the content, consumption, and distribution sides of entertainment. Simply put, we can both create and distribute the future of popular content.

Classic capital and next gen entertainment dollars

Hollywood has always been a hit driven industry. That means not every project will succeed, but a large success can fund a few years of creative and technological risks. The proximity of film and TV studios facilitates an exchange of ideas that often leads to completed projects. Add in a burgeoning group of VR production houses, and creators can develop content locally with in person feedback on technological or creative feasibility. So, studios are still creating films and stories in much the same way, but they are beginning to explore more immersive VR and AR experiences with companies like Fever Content, Within, Survios, or Wevr.

Technology is not the only reason that content is evolving. Shorter audience attention span requires a faster pace. For instance, newer companies like Los Angeles based Buzzfeed takes short form content even further, making it a core focus of their video based content distribution business. Larger companies are also beginning to lend credibility to short form content. For instance, Warner Brothers and CBS Corporation are both owners of The CW TV channel which distributes short form via their relatively new CW Seed. Fullscreen targets a market of people who said no to cable because they prefer a less expensive content distribution service with more variety than traditional cable.

Expanding the horizon of opportunity

Anyone with a smartphone and a social media account can start a web series relatively quickly. That doesn’t guarantee you’ll be a success, or that your content will reach millions of people. However, it removes a key barrier of content creation: access to a public content platform. In previous years, in order to create a series, creators had to pitch a room full of executives in the hopes of winning funding and/or a distribution agreement. Conversely, In 2016, Hollywood embraced independent web series. Some creators event continued on to receive Golden Globes or Emmy Award® nominations. Those who are able to find their audience through relevant social media channels can thrive in public opinion without access to studio execs.

So does this mean people can create content from anywhere in the globe? Yes. However, Los Angeles has a community that can help people form teams from their network to create the next project. We also have one of the highest concentrations of people who understand the film fundraising process as filmmakers progress to larger projects in their careers. We are home to traditional management firms, such as Creative Artists Agency (CAA) and William Morris Endeavor to newer management companies like Studio 71 who manage popular YouTube stars and new content creators. Los Angeles has companies that are helping define the next generation of content and how it’s consumed as well as the technology to distribute it. Silicon beach knows the film and content industry. And we’re prepared to evolve with it.