Metaverses of the film and television industry

What is the difference between the current “Metaverse” and the previous “IP universe”?

“XX Universe” hasn’t been played yet, and the film and television industry has already started to play “Metaverse”.

On the afternoon of January 9, the big brother of the drama circle, Huace Film and Television, announced that they have established a new department of the Metaverse, and they must seize the new opportunities for development in the digital age. At the opening the next day, Huace’s stock price rose by more than 5%. The film and television stocks, which have been bearish all the way under the cold winter of film and television, finally made waves.

Hard Candy turned over, and during this period of time, there were not a few cultural and entertainment stocks that were bullish on the dividends of the “Metaverse” concept. Under the Metaverse concept stock market, Mango Super Media, Perfect World, Aofei Entertainment, Chinese Online, Hubei Radio and Television, etc. are all listed. As for the leading film and television companies that have not yet joined the Metaverse concept stocks, such as Wanda Films, Enlight Media, Huayi Brothers, etc., impatient retail investors are asking in the stock discussion area: Why not engage in the Metaverse?

Metaverses of the film and television industry

In this regard, Guangguang Media answered questions from various retail investors, saying that Danghong Technology and Qiwei Technology, which it participated in, involved Metaverse technology. Huayi and Wanda Films denied their involvement in the Metaverse business, but Wanda launched the first concept of “scripts kill the Metaverse” in the script killing business in cooperation with Gathering Dream Culture Entertainment.

If the popular VR concept 6 years ago was included in the Metaverse system, then the film and television and game industries have already set foot in the Metaverse, right? From finance, real estate to the Internet, the fathers of the film and television industry have changed round after round. Can they be favored by capital again through the “Metaverse”?Can the Metaverse be a good medicine to save the film and television industry from the cold winter?

“Assassination of Novelist” ≈ Metaverse?

Hard Candy Jun originally thought that Huace’s idea of ​​entering the Metaverse was due to his previous investment in VR companies. As a result, in answering questions from investors, Huace not only did not mention VR companies, but also in another VR-related question, frankly strategically participated in some VR companies, but the impact on the company’s performance was extremely low.

According to the information from Tianyancha, as early as 2016 when the “VR fever”, Huace had successively invested in the panoramic shooting company Lanting Digital and the VR production company Rebo Technology. But 5 years later, after failing to make the Metaverse become popular, Rewave Technology announced its cancellation.

Not to mention VR companies and not to take the technical route, what is the connection between Huace and the Metaverse? It is said to be the IP of “Assassination of Novelists”.

Huace said in answering questions from investors that the IP of “Assassination of the Novelist” itself does not belong to the Metaverse, but when the technical conditions are mature, new scenarios can be applied and consumed through VR, AR and other technologies, giving consumers A better consumer experience.

Metaverses of the film and television industry

In other words, could “Assassination of the Novelist” be the Metaverse of the future? So what is the difference between this “Assassination of Novelists Metaverse” and the “Assassination of Novelists Universe” we are familiar with before?

The reason why “Assassination of Novelist” is so optimistic is obviously related to Fu Binxing, the “second-generation” boss of Huace’s new official. “Assassination of Novelist” is the first project she bet on as the master. Huace has always been involved in film projects before. After Fu Binxing returned to China after graduating from a master’s degree in film business from the Cass Business School of City University of London, the management of the film business changed from participating in investment to the main control.

After the success of “Assassination of Novelist” 1 billion at the box office, Hua Ce has long claimed to create an “Assassination of Novelist Universe”. Of course, the vivid image of the “red-haired ghost” in “Assassination of Novelist” has also made many investors optimistic about Huace’s layout of virtual humans – virtual humans are also a popular track related to the Metaverse. According to 21st Century Business Herald, Huace Metaverse focuses on three areas: virtual image, film and television art NFT and digital studio. It also plans to create virtual idol images for 26 artists of the company.

Film and television companies announce their entry into the Metaverse, usually either by investing in VR technology companies or by dabbling in virtual humans. Mango Super Media launched digital virtual hosts “Yao Yao” and “Xiao Yang” when “Happy Camp” was in danger of rectification and suspension last year. Then, Hunan Radio and Television announced that it will use the 5G laboratory as the base to cooperate with China Mobile to explore and build Mango’s “Metaverse” platform.

Metaverses of the film and television industry

Although the gimmick of “5G + Metaverse” is very big, Mango’s actual actions are very down-to-earth. For example, the creation of a virtual live concert label “Chaoyin Lab”, the launch of the Station script to kill the immersive flagship store, and the establishment of a VR application laboratory, etc.

However, what Hard Candy has always been puzzled about is: whether it is virtual humans, special effects CG technology, or VR immersive secret room script killing games, etc., nothing is new. Haven’t the Hollywood film and television industry, domestic and foreign game and entertainment industries been trying? Even Hua Ce himself did a VR virtual variety show “Who is the Great Singer” five years ago.

Moreover, the “facial capture” and “virtual shooting” methods adopted in “Assassination of the Novelist” have not been tried in the “Jazz Track” and “Di Renjie” series a long time ago? If this is also a technology for exploring the Metaverse, then Hollywood blockbusters such as “Alita”, “Warcraft”, “Lord of the Rings”, etc., won’t they win at the starting line?

Metaverses of the film and television industry

Furthermore, if the IP of “Assassination of the Novelist” is expected to realize the Metaverse in the future, then the current competition logic has returned to “the one who wins the IP wins the world”. Disney and Warner, who own the IP universe, didn’t they lock the giant seat of the Metaverse in advance?

How you look at it, the Metaverse play in the film and television industry seems to be returning to the business of exploring the IP derivative chain. Just changed a term and revitalized the old business?

Is it an aphrodisiac or an antidote when the film and television circle stirs up the Metaverse?

There are already many new books on the Metaverse in bookstores, and there are still different opinions on the understanding of the Metaverse. But all in all, everyone agrees with the imagination of the virtual game digital life presented in “The Matrix” and “Ready Player One”. However, some people do not agree that the Metaverse will lead to the dilapidation and barrenness of real life in the movies.

It sounds like the film and television industry has long been ahead of technology and predicted everything.

Perhaps based on this, the voices advocating the film and television industry to get involved in the Metaverse are getting louder and louder. Yikai Capital Wang Ran bluntly said that for content companies, the Metaverse may not only be an antidote and aphrodisiac, but may even be an elixir of life.

In his view, the tickets to the Metaverse will be in the hands of four types of companies. The first category is companies that provide tools and environments, such as Roblox, which is known as the first Metaverse game; the second category is companies that do a new generation of AR/VR/MR social networking, such as what Zuckerberg wants to do with Facebook Immersive social orientation;

Metaverses of the film and television industry

The third category is companies that make super big content, such as Disney, Warner, Netflix, etc., which own big IP copyrights such as “Marvel”, “Harry Potter” and “Game of Thrones”; the fourth category is to make the next generation of intelligent Terminal and brain-computer interface companies, such as Apple.

And why he is optimistic about the third type of content company is because he believes that the user’s willingness and impulse to go to the Metaverse must first come from the content, not the medium.

Hard Candy pondered what he meant: the role that the content company will play in the future is not the planning in the game company now—typing the story, gameplay, world view, etc. for the game skeleton. However, the right to speak is greater.

He also gave an example that the traditional way to monetize content is to sell it to users, to platforms, and to advertisers.In the Metaverse, content is realized in various ways. For example, can Harry Potter fans hold a birthday party or wedding in Hogwarts Castle, while offline wedding service providers provide the same service in the virtual scene of the Metaverse?The Metaverse will deepen and lengthen the value chain of content IP, and immersive Disneyland and Universal Studios will also appear online in the future.

Metaverses of the film and television industry

After all, the value of Metaverse to film and television companies has returned to the IP business. This is what Hollywood giants have been doing. The most classic example is that Disney’s “Star Wars” series IP derivatives revenue has accumulated more than 30 billion US dollars, which is 20 times the box office. Netflix is ​​now also working hard to make its classic IP such as “Stranger Things” into games to maximize the value of IP.

In other words, when the technology matures in the future, these big IP owners will naturally make more immersive games, and even build their own online parks.

So now. What gave investors the confidence to watch film and television companies enter the Metaverse? May be the birth of NFT.

Metaverses of the film and television industry

NFT solves the problem of uniqueness of digital copyright, which is equivalent to injecting DNA into digital works. Whether or not there are so many rich iron fans, it is a technical solution to the collection of digital artworks.

There are already first-line directors successfully selling their NFT works. For example, Wong Kar Wai’s first movie NFT “In the Mood for Love – Moment” completed the transaction at HK$4.284 million, and then Quentin also started selling “Pulp Fiction” NFT. Huace has also launched its own NFT video material library “New Vision of Huace”.

Wang Ran bluntly said: Metaverse and NFT will be the paradise of IP. Then we can imagine, what NFT works can domestic film and television companies sell? Hard Candy can think of the best sellers, probably the deleted clips of “The Legend of Zhen Huan” and the CP tidbits of “Chen Qing Ling” … As for “New Vision of Huace”, why not sell the hardcover remake of “You Fei”?

Technology is the roadblock

Originally thought that Disney’s offline IP parks were hit hard by the epidemic and began to take the road of Netflix’s online streaming media; and Netflix, due to the bottleneck of paid membership, was unable to make up for the money-burning hole, and embarked on the road of developing IP games. The prospects of the film and television industry are not optimistic. . Now the emergence of the Metaverse has indeed given the film and television industry a very good vision.

But what needs to be calm is that the road to the Metaverse is still long.

Zhuang Minghao, vice president of Quwan Group, bluntly said at a Metaverse forum that there are too many technologies involved in the Metaverse, and each link has to take a step forward, and the whole will take a big step forward. But there are some technical aspects that are difficult to take a small step now or even in five years. Only in the visible 5-10 years, there will be breakthroughs in certain core technology blocks, will the Metaverse really reach a new level.

And if you really have to wait until the 5-10-year cycle, the film and television industry may have already undergone earth-shaking changes. After all, pushing forward 5-10 years, the film and television industry is shifting the focus of production from TV stations to streaming media.

Facebook, which did not hesitate to change its name to engage in the Metaverse, is even more conservatively estimated-it is believed that it will take up to 15 years for the Metaverse to bloom. The timing was revealed in a previous interview with Facebook’s head of global affairs, Nick Clegg.

Metaverses of the film and television industry

Moreover, if there is no breakthrough in Metaverse technology in a short period of time, it is very likely that the concept of Metaverse will cool down like the “VR fever” six years ago and enter a relatively sluggish state. Just like the beginning of 2018, VR companies have entered a wave of bankruptcy and mergers.

Guo Cheng, president of STEPVR, who developed the Metaverse hardware technology system, believes that any technological innovation is unexplainable when it appears, and there is a certain bubble period. He believes that there will eventually be companies that stand out.

But is it too early for content companies that lack technology to talk about the Metaverse? In 2019, the film and television industry has been hyping interactive dramas for a while. At that time, the film and television company that shouted “interactive revolution” became misfired two years later. In the end, the interactive drama of these simple options developed by the film and television company was actually tried by the film industry in 1967. Moreover, the game industry has long been exploring interactive movie games, such as the famous “The Walking Dead” and “Night Shift” abroad, and the famous “Invisible Guardian” in China.

Metaverses of the film and television industry

Compared with the game industry, technology is a flaw in the film and television industry. At the same time, the lack of game design thinking is the reason why the film and television industry has always stayed in the original stage in the production of interactive dramas.

The imagination of the film and television industry can run ahead of technology, but in reality, the development of technology is much slower than imagined. Ridley Scott predicted the android world in 2019 in the movie “Blade Runner” in 1982. However, 34 years have passed, and as 2019 approaches, the world of Blade Runner has not been realized. Warner Bros. made Blade Runner 2049 in 2016, delaying the predicted world of androids by 30 years.

In front of the Metaverse, film and television companies can only be imagined artists now. However, upgrading your own “xx universe” to “xx Metaverse” does it sound like a lot of high-end and foreign style? Anyway, we don’t mind it very much, we are also some mature users who are used to “big cup” and “super cup” for a long time.

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