With the end of Howard Stern‘s five year contract approaching (December 2010), XM/Sirius Satellite Radio must decide if it is worth resigning the “shock jock” or risk loosing the 8-10 million subscribers (about half of the company’s total revenue).
Stern has hinted on air that he will likely explore alternative options, which probably won’t include a return to terrestrial radio. Speculation has it that Stern might go to the internet, offering a subscription service (likely $7-10 a month) which would include live streaming over internet devices (such as the iPhone or your computer) in addition to on demand options of new shows as well as Stern’s entire archives. Of course, this is all just speculation at this time, but a move by Stern into the Internet space could legitimatize and bring Podcasting into the mainstream. Content creators now have more power than ever to publish and broadcast direct to fans, bypassing the usual distribution network. If Stern gets five million of his listeners to subscribe, that could be 50 million a month in revenue.
You might be wondering what this has to do with movies. Kevin Smith has signed a new deal with Sirius XM Radio which will syndicate his Smodcast podcast on Satellite radio, and will include new monthly Smodcast broadcasts which will be exclusive to Sirius XM. The regular weekly episodes will still remain free online.
The episodes will be broadcast on The Virus, XM 202, Sirius 197 which currently airs The Opie & Anthony Show, which Smith appears on regularly and The Ron and Fez Show. The first satellite exclusive episode will air this Saturday at 1:00pm.
Sidenote: /Film writer Germain Lussier appears on the channel’s The Ron and Fez Show as “GBaby” during movie segments.
While monthly exclusive broadcasts from Smith certainly isn’t enough to save the company from Stern’s potential departure, it shows that Sirius/XM is attempting to sign more content creators to deals which include exclusive programing. The company has been burning money on deals with broadcasters like Oprah, who herself, doesn’t even record exclusive content for her channel.
You can read the full press release below.
Sirius XM (SIRI) Radio To Launch New Show Hosted By Director Kevin Smith
Director, actor, writer, and producer Kevin Smith is coming to Sirius XM Radio (NASDAQ:SIRI). The Satellite Radio provider announced today that they will bring Kevin Smith’s popular, weekly SModcast program to it’s subscribers. Smith will also be launching a brand-new and exclusive monthly edition, created with the help of his longtime producer and cohost Scott Mosier, beginning this Saturday, September 25th, 2010.
“I’m ecstatic to be a part of the SIRIUS XM family and hope folks find our SModcast program as funny as we do. I loved when The Virus promoted SModcast, back when we first launched the show because, every now and then, I’d be driving around listening to XM and catch SModcast on satellite radio.” – Kevin Smith
Smith broke the news this morning on Sirius XM’s Opie & Anthony program, where he has been a frequent guest. Opie & Anthony’s contract with Sirius XM expires in less than two weeks, with no word yet of any resolution.
According to Sirius XM, Kevin Smith’s weekly show will be “an uncensored, unscripted and unpredictable program on which he shares observations/musings on any topic on his mind: politics, sex, comic books, food, technology, religion, and beyond.”
“I have been a fan of Kevin Smith’s sharp wit, keen eye, creativity and independent spirit for many years. Sirius XM is thrilled to bring his unfiltered voice and perspective of the world to millions of listeners across the country.” – Scott Greenstein, President and Chief Content Officer, Sirius XM Radio
Smith’s debut film Clerks was a cult favorite, bringing Smith critical acclaim and a cult following. Smiths other popular feature films include Chasing Amy, Dogma, Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back, Mallrats, and Zack and Miri Make a Porno. Smith’s next project will be the “political horror film” Red State, slated for a 2011 release. Smith also recently published a comic book version of The Green Hornet.
Smith’s SModcast program launches on Sirius XM’s The Virus, XM channel 202 and Sirius channel 197 as part of the “Best of XM” package, this Saturday, September 25 at 1:00 pm ET, with an original, never before heard episode. SModcast will continue to air weekly during that timeslot. To celebrate the launch of Smith’s SModcast on Sirius XM, a SModcast marathon, featuring a replay of the new show as well as episodes from Smith’s SModcast archives, will air on Sunday, September 26th from 7:00 am – midnight ET.