The age of the mega-merger is upon us, as communications giant AT&T has realised just how hard the world of entertainment is and has decided to flog Warner Media off to Discovery for $43 billion. That deal is likely to have some huge ramifications (and customary lay-offs) for a number of companies in the Warner Media portfolio, such as DC Comics and Rooster Teeth, as well as the company’s video game division Warner Bros. Interactive.
Sort of, it’s kind of weird.
Warner Bros. Interactive is made up of 11 studios, including NetherRealm Studios, RockSteady Studios, Monolith Productions, and Avalanche Software, and there’s no indication what’s going to happen here exactly as a Discovery representative told Axios, “Some of the gaming arm will stay with AT&T and some will go with the new company.”
Between those studios are a lot of heavyweight games. Netherrealm’s Mortal Kombat and Injustice series being prime examples, while Rocksteady rose to fame with the Arkham trilogy of Batman games and is now currently working on Suicide Squad: Kill the Justice League. Then you’ve got Monolith’s turn behind two Middle-earth games, Traveller’s Tales is currently working on Lego Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga, and Warner Bros. Montreal has its Gotham Knights adventure coming next year. Like I said, a lot of properties, many of which are bat-hawt.
On the comic book side of the merger, publisher and chief creative officer of DC Comics, Jim Lee, told The Hollywood Reporter that comic books will still be published by the company.
AT&T said in a press release that the new deal is expected to help reach revenue of $52 billion in 2023 and brings together the “strongest leadership teams, content creators, and high-quality series and film libraries in the media business”. AT&T boss John Stankey said AT&T and Discovery have “complementary content strengths” amongst some other PR-speak chatter:
It will support the fantastic growth and international launch of HBO Max with Discovery’s global footprint and create efficiencies which can be re-invested in producing more great content to give consumers what they want.
There’s a whole bunch of other stuff to unpack in this deal, but we’ll save some of the other talking points for later, when more details of the mega-merger begin to be revealed and the future looks less uncertain for what this new direction means for WB Games, HBO Max, DC Comics, and other Warner Media properties.
Last Updated: May 18, 2021