🦇 Warner scraps “Batgirl”

Friday, August 5, 2022 by Robinhood Snacks |
Leslie Grace, the star of “Batgirl” (Sean Zanni/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images)

Leslie Grace, the star of “Batgirl” (Sean Zanni/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images)

Leslie Grace, the star of “Batgirl” (Sean Zanni/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images)

Leslie Grace, the star of “Batgirl” (Sean Zanni/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images)

Yesterday’s Market Moves
Dow Jones
32,727 (-0.26%)
S&P 500
4,152 (-0.08%)
Nasdaq
12,721 (+0.41%)
Bitcoin
$22,498 (-1.43%)

Hey Snackers,

Mochas are mixing with the metaverse: Starbucks is adding Web3 sweeteners to its rewards program to attract more Gen Z coffee connoisseurs (collectible vanilla-frap NFT, anyone?).

Stocks barely budged yesterday, but oil continued its decline, falling below $90/barrel. Investors have eyes on today’s July jobs report, which is expected to show slower hiring.

Batted

Bye, bye, Batgirl... Warner Bros splurged $90M to produce "Batgirl," a movie based on the DC Comics character. Warner was planning to release it directly to its HBO Max streamer. Five years after the project kicked off, “Batgirl” was basically ready to go — but the public won’t see it.

  • Warner Bros. Discovery is axing “Batgirl,” which won’t be released on HBO Max or in theaters. FYI: studios rarely scrap finished productions.
  • Losing stream: The movie, starring Leslie Grace as Batgirl and Michael Keaton as Batman, was greenlighted last year as part of a push to create buzz-worthy features for HBO Max.
  • Gaining screen: Under new execs, Warner Bros. Discovery has pivoted its focus back to theatrical blockbusters as moviegoing recovers. It’s also scrapping its made-for-streaming “Scooby-Doo” movie, which reportedly cost $40M.

Why not let “Batgirl” fly?… Insiders say the decision had nothing to do with the film’s quality, but was a result of shifting priorities. Remember when Warner’s then-CEO Jason Kilar decided to release all of Warner’s 2021 films on HBO Max at the same time as theaters? That’s not happening this year. Current CEO David Zaslav seems committed to box-office hits.

  • Marketing $$: Studios need to market movies, and it would’ve cost between $30M and $50M to advertise “Batgirl” in the US alone — never mind globally.
  • Awkward: While “Batgirl” may not be big enough for a global theatrical release, it’s likely too expensive to make sense for streaming alone.
  • Write it off: Sources say Warner Bros plans to recoup some of its losses by taking a tax write-down on the film. But that would mean it can’t monetize it.
THE TAKEAWAY

The “sunk-cost fallacy” doesn’t always apply… Sure, Warner threw $90M into this movie. But studios need eyes on their productions, and Warner likely thought the marketing costs for “Batgirl” weren’t worth it. Now it’s cutting its losses, and not without reason: Yesterday, Warner revealed that it swung to a $3.4B loss, in its first earnings since merging with Discovery. Shares tanked 12%.

Raided

Cross-chain bridges… pave the way for highway robbery. Nomad, a crypto protocol that helps people bridge coins and tokens between different blockchains (think: moving USDC from ethereum to moonbeam), lost $190M to a freewheeling hack on Monday. After someone spotted a security vulnerability in Nomad’s smart contract, potentially hundreds of people got in on the theft, striking a reputational blow to key crypto infrastructure. But the problem’s bigger than just Nomad.

Crypto bridge… is falling down. Nomad is only the most recent example of cracking crypto bridges. Wormhole was hit with a $325M hack in February, $625M was boosted from Ronin in March, and $100M was lifted from Harmony in June. In other words, cross-chain bridges are increasingly taking a beating. Just this year:

  • 69% of all stolen crypto has been looted from bridges (as opposed to exchanges or individuals).
  • $2B has been stolen from crypto bridges in at least 13 cross-chain bridge hacks.
THE TAKEAWAY

Cross-chain bridges are critical for crypto… but their shaky foundations put the #FutureOfFinance at risk. Different blockchains (think: bitcoin, ethereum, solana) are kind of like walled-off crypto kingdoms, with cross-chain bridges as the toll roads letting traders move coins (and Ape NFTs) between them. No bridges = no trade, making cross-chain bridges crucial to decentralized finance (DeFi). But like on the roads of old, robbers are hiding in the digital bushes — and they're getting bolder. Bridge security will have to get its act together if blockchain kingdoms are to potentially flourish.

What else we’re Snackin’

  • Slots: Vegas is booming as the reopening attracts visitors to the gambling capital. Casino giants Caesars and MGM Resorts saw record quarterly sales for their Sin City properties as vacationers splurge on the strip.
  • Combo: Restaurant Brands topped expectations thanks to strong sales at its Burger King and Tim Hortons chains. More customers are using coupons and loyalty points to combat higher Whopper prices.
  • Wager: Coinbase shares jumped 10% after the crypto exchange signed a deal with BlackRock to let institutional investors (think: hedge funds) buy bitcoin. Coinbase has lost 65% of its value this year as crypto winter continues.
  • Spark: Electric-truck maker Nikola topped sales estimates and shrank losses last quarter, delivering 48 semis. It plans to deliver up to 500 more this year.
  • Butter: Paramount saw a 19% revenue boost last quarter, partly thanks to the box-office success of “Top Gun: Maverick.” Paramount+ also topped 43M subscribers as other streamers hit a wall.

Snack Fact of the Day

Every US state but Delaware had wildfires last year

Friday

  • July jobs report drops
  • Earnings expected from Goodyear Tire & Rubber

Authors of this Snacks own: bitcoin, solana and ethereum and shares of Starbucks, Nikola, and Warner Bros. Discovery

ID: 2339106