Telecom giant AT&T has reached a deal with Discovery which allows its CEO David Zaslav to run the whole Warner Media division. His aim is at focussing on creators and storytellers which might mean top talent like Christopher Nolan and Zack Snyder might return to the once-fabled director-driven studio.
What the $43B Warner Media/Discovery Deal Means for HBO Max & DC Comics
Warner Media merges with Discover inc.
Telecom giant AT&T had bought Time Warner in 2016 and since then they have been struggling to keep the company afloat. AT&T has agreed to spin off its media operations in a deal with Discovery Inc. that will create a new entertainment company, merging assets ranging from CNN and HBO to HGTV and the Food Network. The transaction values the combined entity at about $130 billion including debt, based on WarnerMedia’s estimated enterprise value of more than $90 billion.
Bad decisions forcing AT&T to merge Warner Media and Discovery
From the toxic production of Justice League to a decision to drop their entire movie slate for 2021 on HBOMax. That caused legendary director Christopher Nolan to leave the studio after trashing the streaming service as one of the worst, the studio has made some terrible decisions.
After realizing that HBO Max didn’t have the numbers they were hoping for, they decided to sell the division to Discovery. So under the new hierarchy, Discovery CEO David Zaslav will be controlling the whole of Warner Media and its massive IPs like Batman, Superman, Game of Thrones, and others.
A return to a director-driven studio
Warner Bros not long ago had a reputation for being a very creator-focused studio. This is why they allowed their creators to do things that other studios might not have allowed. For example, The Dark Knight trilogy and Watchmen are not the traditional light-hearted superhero movies we are accustomed to. But as we look back, Chris Nolan’s The Dark Knight is possibly the most daring Superhero movie ever made and it stands the test of time. It is fourth on the highest rated movies of all time in IMDB, which wouldn’t have happened if
Warner hadn’t taken the risk.
So it is hoped that the new leadership at Warner Media and Discovery might return Warner to its roots and more focused on its creative talents. The first signs are already positive, as the big-budget sci-fi thriller Dune which is directed by Denis Villeneuve has been given a full theatrical window before arriving on HBO Max.
What are the chances for #Restorethesnyderverse?
While nothing is set in concrete, with new management from Warner Media and DIscovery comes renewed optimism. A fresh set of eyes might look at how much demand there is for Zack Snyder to finish his Justice League trilogy and how much demand there was for his original cut of Justice League. And they might realize the money they are leaving on the table by not pursuing this route.
Because at the end of the day there is a limited window in which the Justice League actors can still do their roles, especially Ben Affleck who is getting older and older. Also, there is no other director with the chops to create an interesting Justice League movie. So while these are still early days in the Discovery Warner Media merger, optimism for Snyder’s DCEU is high.