Technicolor To Sell Its TV And Movie Postproduction Business

Originally posted on Forbes

The movie industry has changed considerably since the moving-picture cinema was created in the 1880’s, as the work of a few inventors (including Thomas Edison) and technologies merged together to create something very similar to today’s theatrical movie business.

Few industries have been more devastated by the Covid-19 pandemic than the movie business. But it didn’t take a worldwide pandemic to challenge the theatrical movie industry which has been beaten down by the growth of at-home entertainment (both technology and programming), as well as the growth of interactive entertainment like mobile and video gaming.

One more indication of the changes in the movie industry today involve one of the great technology companies of the early 1900’s – Technicolor. This company was created in 1914 by two scientists in Boston who attended the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (hence the work “Techni” before “color”). Over the years, Technicolor came to dominate the technology used to produce movies in color. Now they have announced that they are selling their post production business. Other deals have also been made in the post-production area, such as Company 3’s sale to Framestore, a large visual effects and production company backed by China Cultural Investments Holding Companyof Shanghai, China.

This deal moves the Technicolor unit into a larger enterprise in the post-production world and, presumably, will provide added value to the buyer through consolidation and building scale by combining the companies.

Technicolor is probably best known for its work on seminal titles like The Wizard of Oz made in 1939. Technicolor will continue to be in “show-business” with its “visual effects and animation companies MPC, The Mill, Mr. X and Mikros Animation, which service film, TV, advertising, gaming and live events and are not part of the deal.”, according to The Hollywood Reporter. Technicolor also has businesses in the connected home arena, broadband technology, and set-top boxes.

Technicolor CEO Richard Moat said in a statement, that “The strategic sale of Technicolor Post is part of our long-term vision for Technicolor Production Services to focus on VFX and animation for the entertainment industry, and creative services and technologies for the advertising industry, which provide the maximum value to our clients.”

In an exclusive email interview, Bruce Hack, former Chairman of the Board of Technicolor and well-regarded media executive across traditional media and gaming. said to this author, “Technicolor is selling what is likely the least valuable portion of its creative services business, post production. It is retaining the more profitable and defensible activities, like premium film and TV production, where it holds a market leading position based on talent, technology and geographic leverage.”