quibi in trouble

When a mysterious new startup founded by Hollywood mainstay Jeffrey Katzenberg earned the support of every major movie studio and secured over a billion dollars in funding before it even had a name, it turned a lot of heads. But when that name was revealed to be “Quibi,” the company became the butt of jokes – and despite convincing several top-tier filmmakers and actors to make content for it, the service was never able to shake the target off its back.

After an underwhelming launch in April (which feels like it happened approximately nine zillion years ago), Katzenberg and his team are trying to do some damage control in response to rumors that Quibi could end up instituting layoffs at the company.
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quibi free trial

Was there ever a new brand with worse timing than Quibi? Quibi, a mobile streaming platform dreamed up by Jeffrey Katzenberg and supported by dozens of high-profile stars and filmmakers, was supposed to be the next big thing — by making content much, much smaller. On paper, it’s an interesting idea: a streaming platform for the commuter, for people to watch on the subway or in the office bathroom stall. But there’s no way of knowing whether people would’ve gotten over the dumb name and latched onto Quibi’s concept, because the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic hit. And suddenly, the commuters that Quibi was targeting as its key demographic were all stuck at home.

Understandably, subscribers would be frustrated when they opened up Quibi on their smartphones and found that it could not be played on their nice living room TVs, which are doing extra work during lockdown. It was just one more hit against Quibi, which disappointed with its originals shows and rollout and was unable to played on televisions upon launch. But Quibi is slowly grasping for relevance once again, by adding Airplay support to its app. Now it will be a fraction more watchable, at least, for iPhone users.

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quibi losses

Oh, Quibi, Quibi, Quibi. Like Icarus, you flew too close to the sun with wings made of wax. And by that I mean you attempted to launch a new streaming service that no one seemed particularly interested in. And it looks like it’s going to cost you to the tune of half a billion dollars. However, Quibi isn’t out of business yet, and the short-form streaming service still has enough money to keep the lights on. But for how long?

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Quibi movies in chapters YouTube

After a much-hyped launch and a somewhat muted response from potential customers, Quibi has now posted three full episodes of three of its original “movies in chapters” on YouTube. It’s a classic strategy: give audiences a taste of your product for free, and hope they like it enough to pay for more. Check out the first episodes of Most Dangerous Game (starring Liam Hemsworth and Christoph Waltz), The Stranger (starring Maika Monroe and Dane DeHaan), and Dummy (starring Anna Kendrick) below.
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Reno 911 trailer

Maybe some crackpot cops will be the ones to save Quibi. The mobile streaming platform has gotten off to a shaky start, with disappointing download numbers, accusations of plagiarism, and unimpressed reviews of the new short-form service. But the return of a beloved comedy series may entice people to download the streaming platform. Reno 911! is coming to Quibi, which will premiere the seventh season of the cop comedy series. Watch the new trailer below.

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quibi free trial

Jeffrey Katzenberg and Meg Whitman bet big on Quibi, locking down a billion dollars in funding, the support of every major Hollywood studio, and hiring some of the biggest names in entertainment to make content for the mobile-only streaming service. But what they couldn’t have foreseen was a global pandemic coinciding with the launch of their service. Just a little more than a week after its debut, the Quibi app has already fallen out of the top 40 free apps on Apple’s U.S. app store. Read More »

Reno 911 zoom

I know different parts of the country adopted self-isolation and quarantine procedures at different times over the past several weeks, but many of us are coming up on a full month of being in quarantine due to COVID-19. And amid all of the Tiger King discourse, our daily streaming recommendations, and films like Parasite and Portrait of a Lady on Fire hitting Hulu, you may have missed a few things that might help make your time at home a tiny bit better. So let’s run through a few of them, shall we?
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The Stranger trailer

In the series finale of Game of Thrones, Tyrion Lannister makes a grand speech about how there’s nothing in the world more powerful than a good story. I hope Maika Monroe‘s character in the new Quibi movie The Stranger saw that speech and took it to heart, because she’s going to need one hell of a story of her own if she wants to stay alive. She plays a ride share driver who picks up a deranged sociopath (played by Dane DeHaan), and he threatens to kill her unless she tells him “a really good story.” Check out the newest trailer below.
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memory hole plagiarism

The new Quibi reality series Memory Hole has been accused of plagiarism by the VHS art collective Everything is Terrible! The art collective, which launched its own VHS clip variety show also titled Memory Hole in 2014, accused Quibi’s Memory Hole creator Scott Vrooman of ripping off the concept and logo from their series.

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Cool Posts From Around the Web:

On the April 6, 2020 Episode of /Film Daily, /Film editor-in-chief Peter Sciretta is joined by /Film writer Chris Evangelista to review the launch line-up for the new streaming service Quibi.

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