Documentary Business

Peter Hamilton Consultants, Inc

Network Profile

Oprah’s Documentary Club: The Red Carpet for Julia, Forest, Goldie, Gabriel & Mariel

“Oprah’s Documentary Club – Is it a Game-changer?” We asked that question in our May 12 post, when we examined: OWN’s partnership with ro*co productions to acquire ‘cinematic documentaries that can inspire and entertain’ The anticipated license fees, and how they compare with other networks The acquisitions process And we flagged the potentially huge impact […]

The Emerging ‘Sweet Spot’ for OWN: The Oprah Winfrey Network

This week, we look at how our ‘Sweet Spot’ methodology applies to the emerging factual production budgets for OWN – the Oprah Winfrey Network. Next week, we examine OWN’s exciting partnership with ro*co productions to identify feature documentaries for a monthly slot inspired by Oprah’s celebrated book club. OWN will launch on January 1, 2011, replacing

How Nat Geo Channel Commissions Programs. Case Study: Nat Geo Explorer

This week we go deeper into the development and production process for National Geographic Channel (NGC), including a look at Explorer specials produced by National Geographic Television (NGT). The ‘Sweet Spot’ Last week, we described NGC’s flexible commissioning model that mixes: Coproductions with NGC-International (70% +/-) Coproductions with other partners, and Work-for-hire projects. Many of you

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What Does National Geographic Channel Pay for Programs?

This week we examine the ‘Sweet Spot’ for network production budgets for National Geographic Channel (NGC). Next week’s topic: a deeper look into NGC’s Development and Production Processes. NGC was launched in 2001 and is now distributed to 70 million of the 115 million U.S. TV homes. NGC is a joint venture between National Geographic

How Do A&E and Bio Networks Develop New Programs?

This week’s topic: How do networks develop and green light new programs? Our case study is the A&E and Bio pair of channels. The program development process is a huge and complex topic. Each year, hundreds of channels worldwide commission thousands of factual entertainment programs at a cost of several $U.S. billions. Commissioning practices differ

What Does History Pay for Programming?

The ‘Sweet Spot’ for History In our previous post, we recapped the concept of the network ‘Sweet Spot’, and analyzed A&E’s commission costs. (See Archive: March 3, 2010). This week we look at the U.S. History channel, which is also owned by AETN, and its sister brands History International and Military History. History is distributed to more than 98

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What Does A&E Pay for Programs?

The ‘Sweet Spot’ for A&E In our previous posts, we examined Discovery’s ‘Sweet Spot’ for commissions. (See Archive: February 17 and February 24, 2010). This week we look at A&E, the flagship and parent of the AETN family of channels that includes History, Bio, History International, the digi-nets Crime & Investigation (CI) and Military History, and since

Discovery’s Digi-Nets: What Do They Pay for Programs?

The ‘Sweet Spot’ for Discovery’s Digi-Nets In our previous blog (February 17, 2010), we examined Discovery’s ‘Sweet Spot’ for commissions by the ‘Big Four’: The Discovery Channel, TLC, Animal Planet and Discovery Health, which will be relaunched as OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network. This week, we look at Discovery’s ‘’Digi-Nets’ – so named because they are not yet fully