Sign up to receive 5 free days of our daily summary for tech news.

Read this article for free.

Already a subscriber? Log in here


Hollywood Questions Hulu as Video Landscape Shifts

When the owners of the online video site Hulu pulled the company off the auction block for the second time last summer, they agreed to inject $750 million into the company to help it compete with big-spenders like Netflix and Amazon in the increasingly cutthroat online video business. A big priority was creating original programming, with some executives hoping for a Hulu hit to match Netflix’s “House of Cards.”

But continued executive turmoil and mixed messages about the site’s direction have left some in Hollywood wondering whether the company has enough stability to follow through on its original programming plans. Hulu was started as a way for TV networks to distribute their shows on the Internet, and recent events suggest the company’s new executive team and its owners—Disney, Fox and NBCUniversal—still haven’t worked out a clear strategy.

A few weeks ago, a would-be series from "Gone Baby Gone" author Dennis Lehane, based on his Patrick and Angie detective series, was scuttled at the eleventh hour by Hulu’s board, according to three people with knowledge of the deal. The project, which had been championed by Hulu’s then-head of development Charlotte Koh, was viewed inside the company as one that had the potential to become a flagship hit, and two sources said its abrupt cancellation was a big factor in Ms. Koh’s decision to resign last week. Ms. Koh did not respond to requests for comment.

What Is The Information?

Notebook b5103017ee163370a1667c9ce59ab0ef023875a17888105d26c185cadf31bb69

Daily news analysis

Every weeknight, we'll send you our reporters’ views on the day’s top tech news—distilled into one email.

Notes bb3aa5069205d702dda37fc71dc6f1c59df2310c4379304e9f1199f052af4884

Exclusive Articles

We broke it first. Receive original reporting, stories, and exclusives you won't read anywhere else from the largest newsroom in tech.

Conference calls c9e664e8b96ee347d3e92b8309938f268422b9db98cfabca5c826fbb75054b23

Conference calls

Go deep into areas like crypto and VC diversity—or get real-time analysis of breaking news—via conference calls with our reporters and other experts.

Events 499acedd16cffc41445edd76bfd302b2836c2a27419890f17130a6b10e2aa3df

Special Events

For no extra fee, subscribers get access to more than a dozen events yearly, from intimate dinners to larger gatherings with marquee speakers.

Access the best reporting on the tech industry read by tens of thousands of global executives.

Become a contributor

Share your views and find other subscribers by completing your profile. You’ll be listed in our contributor directory.

Org Charts

Access the only collection of tech company org charts. Our expanding database includes companies like Amazon, Snap, and Uber.

Slack community

Discuss topics and current events with our subscriber-only Slack group and share news about your company with other subscribers.

Share with your team

Subscribers can unlock any article and share it with friends and co-workers through a special share link.

Stay up to date on Silicon Valley

Sign up for Jessica Lessin’s (The Information’s CEO & Founder) free Saturday newsletter and also receive a complimentary week of our daily afternoon tech commentary email.

Already a subscriber? Log in here

Recent Articles


How Cord-Cutting Is Turning Local Sports TV Into Winners and Losers

By Matt Pressberg

Media Entertainment

NBCU’s Latest Online Video Idea: Paying Viewers

By Tom Dotan and Jessica Toonkel

Media Entertainment

Fox May Bid to Buy Back Sports Channels

By Jessica Toonkel and Tom Dotan

Media Entertainment

Hulu Looks to Make Its Skinny Bundle Skinnier

By Jessica Toonkel

During the presentations to the various potential acquirers, Hulu executives emphasized that close to half of the site’s traffic came from content that wasn’t produced by its parent companies.