Netflix’s ‘Mudbound’ scores four Oscar nominations

Mudbound Amazon and Netflix both got some good news in this morning’s Oscar nominations. Mudbound, a Netflix original that tells the story of two families (one black, one white) farming on the Mississippi Delta, got four nominations — including best supporting actress (Mary J. Blige), best adapted screenplay (Dee Rees and Virgil Williams) and best original song (“Mighty River”).… Read More

YouTube partners with Kevin Durant to expand original sports programming

 YouTube announced today that it’s enlisted the help of basketball star Kevin Durant in a bid to expand original sports content. The Golden State Warriors small forward and business partner Rich Kleiman have signed on to develop programming centered around Durant and fellow professional athletes under the umbrella of their Thirty Five Media video business. Read More

‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ returns to Hulu on April 25 (and here’s a new trailer)

 The first season of The Handmaid’s Tale has been a home run for Hulu — the series has been embraced by awards voters, and it was one of the streaming service’s most-watched dramas last year. This weekend, Hulu has been working to build up anticipation for the 13-episode second season, with the release of the first images and the announcement that the show will return sometime… Read More

KweliTV is Netflix for black people, by black people, starring black people

 Kweli.tv aims to be the go-to streaming media platform for black filmmakers all over the world to share their content and make money from its distribution. KweliTV handpicks all of its content, with 98 percent of the content having been official selections at film festivals worldwide. “There are a lot of really great filmmakers out there globally,” KweliTV founder DeShuna Spencer… Read More

Cassette tapes are back, kind of

 Add the surprise return of the cassette tape to the long list of why the last couple of years have been some of the strangest in recent memory. After a number of strong years for the vinyl record, the media’s successor had a good 12 months, as sales in the US rose a solid 35-percent, according to Nielsen Music.  The cassette tape doesn’t appear to be on track for the same kind… Read More

Ex-Zynga execs raise $15 million for their new gaming studio, Manticore Games

 In the eight years since Frederic Descamps and Jordan Maynard launched their last gaming startup, the industry they helped shape now brings in more than $100 billion in revenues globally. There’s been a resurgence in gaming on PCs. User-generated content has produced a string of wildly popular hits. Those trends are exactly what the two are hoping to harness with Manticore Games. Read More

Sources: Apple is acquiring music recognition app Shazam

 As Spotify continues to inch towards a public listing, Apple is making a move of its own to step up its game in music services. Sources tell us that the company is close to acquiring Shazam, the popular app that lets people identify any song, TV show, film or advert in seconds, by listening to an audio clip or (in the case of, say, an ad) a visual fragment, and then takes you to content… Read More

Original Content podcast: We ride with the outlaws of ‘Godless’

Godless Some big names — including Jeff Daniels, Michelle Dockery and Scoot McNairy — donned cowboy hats and mounted horses for Godless, a seven-episode Western on Netflix. Each episode was written and directed by Scott Frank (A Walk Among the Tombstones), while Steven Soderbergh (Ocean’s Eleven) serves an executive producer. But does all that talent add up to a compelling show? Read More

Netflix is slowly teasing Black Mirror Season 4 with another trailer

 Netflix has been tight-lipped about the release date for Season 4 of Black Mirror. However, the streaming giant continues to tease with trailers for each of the episodes. Thus far, we’ve got our hands on trailers for Arkangel (directed by Jodie Foster) and Crocodile, both of which were creepy to our satisfaction. Today, Netflix has released a trailer for the third of six episodes. This… Read More

Amazon debuts Elemental-based AWS Media Services for video app creation

 Video is what consumers are paying attention to these days, and Amazon’s AWS is hoping to capitalise on that with one of its latest launches. Doubling down on its video services for media companies, app publishers — and actually any other organization that has considered launching a video service — Amazon today announced a new suite of five video processing tools as part of… Read More