Peter Kafka

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CBS May Produce New Show for Netflix

The digital video boom has generated lots of extra money for big media companies, who are selling off old shows to services like Amazon, Hulu and Netflix.

But as those services start to dabble in creating their own shows, big media companies could get another bump, by helping the new guys make new content.

CBS, for instance, makes about 20 shows at its own production facilities, primarily for itself. But the broadcaster may end up producing something for Netflix, CEO Les Moonves said today during the company’s earnings call.

Moonves didn’t offer any other details on the discussions, and said he wouldn’t until there was a signed deal. Netflix offered up even less information: “Anyone and everyone who produces content is looking to do deals with Netflix,” Netflix spokesman Steve Swasey said via email.

Last week, Netflix launched “Lillyhammer,” its first original series, and later this year it will debut “House of Cards,” a David Fincher/Kevin Spacey series. Twentieth Century Fox — which like this site is owned by News Corp. —  is also producing a new run of “Arrested Development” for Netflix.

The company has also reportedly reached a deal with Lionsgate to produce “Orange Is the New Black,” a new series from the creator of Showtime’s “Weeds.”

Meanwhile, Moonves says CBS continues to talk to other players who are in the market for the stuff he’s already made. Verizon and Redbox have already announced plans to launch a new subscription video service, and while Moonves wouldn’t name names — Google? Apple? — he didn’t dissuade analysts from anticipating more buyers for his stuff.

“There are a lot of conversations,” he said this afternoon. “It’s hard to predict whether they’ll be a major deal. But we’re talking to an awful lot of people.”


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There’s a lot of attention and PR around Marissa, but their product lineup just kind of blows.

— Om Malik on Bloomberg TV, talking about Yahoo, the September issue of Vogue Magazine, and our overdependence on Google