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Departing WarnerMedia CEO Kilar sees future of Hollywood in the blockchain -Breaking


© Reuters. FILEPHOTO: Jason Kilar (CEO of WarnerMedia) arrives in Sun Valley, Idaho for the Allen and Co. Sun Valley annual media conference, July 6th, 2021. REUTERS/Brian Losness/File Photo

By Dawn Chmielewski

(Reuters) – WarnerMedia CEO Jason Kilar stated that Hollywood’s future is in blockchain technology as he leaves the company he led into streaming.

Kilar stated that he sees new opportunities in the intersection of technology and storytelling, but declined to reveal his next endeavor.

The veteran tech executive said he had no plans to retire after announcing his departure from AT&T Inc (NYSE:) unit WarnerMedia ahead of its merger with Discovery (NASDAQ:) Inc in a deal expected to close this month.

Kilar has had a career that spanned Hollywood and Silicon Valley. He sees blockchain as transformative for the entertainment industry, particularly as it simplifies the process of purchasing unique digital collectibles like Non Fungible tokens.

Kilar said that he believes that there will be a wave of potential new talent coming to Hollywood just like the DVD wave did in Hollywood. He spoke to Reuters after he had announced Kilar’s resignation to his staff.

WarnerMedia is one example of such a company that this has had a dramatic impact on their economic fortunes.

Kilar believes that blockchain technology could open new avenues for financing.

STREAMING WATER

Kilar’s long-standing track record in pushing technology and entertainment change has been a strong indicator of his ability to do so.

According to Hulu executives, the former executive at Amazon.com (NASDAQ) was hired to head Hulu because he didn’t rely on preconceived notions about how television should operate.

Hulu launched in March 2008. The site was once called ClownCo by bloggers. It gained popularity in just two months.

Kilar quit Hulu after a dispute with its owners. The former News Corp (NASDAQ), NBCUniversal, and the Walt Disney (NYSE:) Co. This company had pushed for increased advertising and an end of the free service.

Kilar created Vessel, his subscription service for video content on social media. Vessel was later sold to Verizon (NYSE:) in 2016, and he rejoined WarnerMedia four years later as the COVID-19 pandemic began.

He learned from this experience and made changes that will reshape Hollywood. Kilar faced with closing movie theatres and increasing competition online. This led him to break down the “traditional release” window for films. These windows have been used in order to bring movies home after watching them long times.

Kilar showed new films simultaneously in theaters and via the HBO Max streaming site on the same day as the pandemic. On Christmas Day 2020, the experiment was launched with “Wonder Woman 1984” and continued until 2021.

This move brought new entertainment to the HBO service in a period when production was disrupted by the pandemic. The move also allowed HBO Max and HBO cable TV to gain 73.8 million more subscribers.

“History has shown that incumbents tend to fight trends that challenge established ways,” to their detriment, Kilar wrote in a 2011 blog post.

Mike Robinson
Mike covers the financial, utilities and biotechnology sectors for Street Register. He has been writing about investment and personal finance topics for almost 12 years. Mike has an MBA in Finance from Wake Forest University.