David Nevins’ Billion-Dollar Post-Peak TV Gamble

This week, David Nevins, the veteran Showtime and Paramount Global executive, became C.E.O. of investor Peter Chernin’s entertainment venture, North Road Co. Photo: Emma McIntyre/Getty Images
Matthew Belloni
July 9, 2023

You don’t need me to tell you that the burst of the Peak TV content bubble is being felt acutely across Hollywood. But there’s a growing group that believes the contraction has actually created an opportunity for independent studios that have been squeezed by the global streamers and their desire to own all rights to all content for all time. And this week, David Nevins, the veteran Showtime and Paramount Global executive, joined them, becoming C.E.O. of investor Peter Chernin’s entertainment venture, North Road Co., which launched last summer with a bunch of experienced execs and nearly $1 billion from Providence, Apollo, and the Qataris.

I like the Chernin thesis. With more pressure on streaming, these companies should be reducing costs, and, for the most part, they should abandon the content-hoarding model of overpaying for platform exclusivity, which would give independent studios more rights and allow the traditional studios to move older shows around. What was HBO’s Six Feet Under doing on Max, anyway? Not much. Now it’ll find a new audience on Netflix, and send some cash back to Warner Discovery.