HBO announced the second season of "A Game of Thrones"

lunes, 30 de mayo de 2011 - Publicado por Manuel en 4:48
In a not surprising move, HBO announced the release of the second season of A song of Ice and Fire series next year, just after the first season premiere.

Yeah, I played Boromir in the LOTR, and he died. Why do you ask that?

A game of thrones is the first book of A Song of Ice and Fire cycle, an epic fantasy saga compared with Tolkien´s LOTR, with every new release being a best seller.

HBO is a US based television network,owned by Time Warner, focus in providing content to an adult audience, from boxing shows, to PG-13 tv series. HBO is most known now for its original series, most of them being received with great success by critic and public. With TV blockbusters from The Sopranos to Rome, HBO created a new format in TV, based in 1-hour dramatic series with explicit content, with higher budgets than its competitors. As an example, as of 2005 ,  the award winning Rome tv show costs were about 8.75 million dollars per episode, with an average of the industry of 4 million in 2005.

HBO moved one step further late in 2010 by announcing the release of a tv show based in a Game of thrones. This movement was, in my opinion, a perfect alignment for the company. First, because these books have already a loyal base of fans, that would be excited to see how their imagined universe became real.Second, because these novels are as explicit as a book can be, and HBO fans really like the image of “we censor nothing” that this channel shows. Third, because those loyal readers and those HBO fans are probably the same people.

Lets talk a little about money. One could say, “hey, but those people who like epic fantasy books and action tv shows, are not the ones downloading illegally movies and stuff?” Well, that is partially true. But Internet users are not yet the main revenue source for HBO.  The core business for HBO its still being a cable TV channel, offered in bundle with other channels as a part of the offer of telecom operators selling entertainment packages with Internet, Cable TV, and landline. Then it comes license sales for other tv channels (generally outside US). After those revenue sources, HBO realized that video on demand, online streaming sales are also important, specially once you have an established channel (HBO GO, a VOD online platform). More over, there even exists an iphone/android app, so smartphone users can watch their favorite tv shows on their devices. And finally, once the tv show is not a novelty, here it comes the DVD/Blue ray sales, collector´s edition and so on.

By looking at the numbers, A Game of thrones has been successful with the tv viewers and it helped it mother company to boost its benefits in Q1 2011. So how to capitalize the production costs (around 4,5 million $ per episode) of a popular product.

Of course, the easiest way is to keep broadcasting it as long as there are people interested in watching it. HBO showed the premiere of AGOT about 4 times the first week, in different time ranges, and in every HBO channel(like HBO latino for example).

And the second way of course, is to keep going with a successful franchise. And that is the reason why, even only after the first episode, HBO started the pre-production of the second season. Hopefully they will continue doing as good as they are doing now.