Fifty Shades Darker

Comcast is giving Disney a run for its money in Hollywood.

First-quarter film revenue at the cable conglomerate jumped 43.2 percent, to $2 billion — thanks to the latest in the racy chick-porn franchise “Fifty Shades Darker.”

Comcast’s first quarter was also aided by the cheapo horror movie “Get Out,” which looks like one of the company’s most profitable bets in some time — with ticket sales of $182 million on a $4.5 million budget.

Comcast’s Universal Pictures, run by Chairwoman Donna Langley, also released “Sing” in the period, which rang up $625 million in ticket sales.

Things are looking better for the studio in the current quarter — goosed, no doubt, by another long-running franchise, “The Fate of the Furious.” It topped $900 million in worldwide box office last week.

Universal is also releasing “Despicable Me 3” and “Pitch Perfect 3” this year.

Overall revenue at NBC­Universal increased 14.7 percent, to $7.9 billion.

Cable network unit revenue rose 7.6 percent, driven in large part by higher distributor fees — which more than offset a 2.9 percent decline in advertising revenue.

Ad revenue was affected by lower ratings.

NBCUniversal’s cable networks include CNBC, MSNBC and general entertainment channels such as SyFy and Bravo.

The TV networks may also be disrupted by a writers strike. The union reps want to see new deals for pay and pensions.

NBCUniversal boss Steve Burke told investors on the earnings call that he was hopeful a new deal would get done.

Despite all the cord-cutting enthusiasm, Comcast also managed to add subscribers in the period, though consumers are voting for broadband services in droves.

Comcast added 42,000 video subscribers in the period and 429,000 high-speed internet customers.

Shares rose 2.1 percent, to $39.59.

Source : http://nypost.com/2017/04/27/fifty-shades-darker-helps-boost-comcast-profits/

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