Lesson 8 of 15
In Progress

Entertainment as a Business – Part 1

Matthew Colon May 11, 2022

If you are making a game to sell to more than your mother, you are jumping into the entertainment business.  This lesson teaches a few fundamental lessons by analyzing Pixar.

Key Principle

Even the big studios, with all the talent, money, and expertise, don’t really know what will be a hit. 

Key Verse

James 4:13-14a
Now listen, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money.” Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow.


Discussion Questions

  1. What stood out to you in the book?
  2. What surprised you about the story of Pixar?
  3. The author met with a top Universal executive to discuss a business model for entertainment, something sustainable and predictive.  The executive said they “play the schedule” of small or large bets in various genres with various talents.  How do you think this applies to board or video game industry?
    1. The movie studio approach, now well over 100 years old as an industry, appears to be playing roulette; betting black, odd, even, or a spread.  What do you think of this?
    2. Pixar managed to crank out hit after hit for at least a decade.  This seems to defy the studio’s “play the schedule” approach.  What do you think of this?
  4. Why is a financial model so important?
  5. What did you learn about how to found a studio?
  6. Pixar was initially addicted to bad money – commercials.
    1. Why was this bad money?
    2. What kind of bad money are or could you be addicted to?
  7. Their money problems led to finding money in patents.  This is a great example of how hardship causes resourcefulness.  They found good money.  What is an example from your project where hardship caused resourcefulness?
  8. So far this book is saying how great artistry requires a great business plan.  Do you agree or disagree?