The former Cheers producer explains why the studios are failing, the writers and actors are missing the big picture, and creators fear their audience.
Today’s episode is an audio version of The Reason Livestream, which takes place every Thursday at 1 p.m. Eastern on Reason‘s YouTube channel.
The topic this week was the strikes by Hollywood writers and actors and the guest was Rob Long, whose long and storied career in the entertainment industry includes stints writing and show running for the classic sitcom Cheers, among many other things. He’s also a longtime contributor to National Review, a columnist for Commentary, a co-creator of the online community and podcast platform Ricochet, and the host of the weekly radio commentary Martini Shot.
Zach Weissmueller and I talked with Long about how the studios and streaming platforms like Netflix brought most of their problems on themselves; whether fears of artificial intelligence taking over Hollywood are overblown (spoiler alert: they are); why studios and production companies refuse to create more mass-audience content like the Roseanne reboot and Top Gun: Maverick; and why Rob believes we are in what he calls an “age of blunder,” where really smart people in charge make really terrible decisions on everything from COVID-19 to foreign policy to the creation and distribution of TV shows and movies.
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- Why We Can’t Have Nice Things. A six-part Reason magazine podcast series about the frustrating and foolish aspects of American trade policy that make everyday items more expensive. From last year’s sudden shortages of baby formula to the Jones Act and President Lyndon Johnson’s infamous “chicken war,” host Eric Boehm sits down with industry experts and libertarian policy wonks to explore how these counterproductive rules got made—and explains why they can be so difficult to undo.
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