NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- At least Rupert Murdoch doesn't have to worry about his movie business.
21st Century Fox (FOXA) shares has fallen 15% in 2015, largely on concerns that its broadcast television properties, led by the Fox network, are taking too long to reverse a torturous slide in ratings that has only exacerbated their general decline in advertising revenue. Fox continues to be mired in fourth place among the major U.S. broadcasters, its prime-time audience having shrunk 21% among younger viewers during the current TV season, according to Nielsen.
But over at Twentieth Century Fox, the New York-based company's film studio, the future is bright. Fox's filmed entertainment segment boosted revenue in the third quarter to $2.39 billion from $2.28 billion, driven largely by successful box office releases of Taken 3 and Kingsman: The Secret Service. To date, these films have generated worldwide ticket sales of $401.4 million and $325.8 million, respectively.
Much of the credit goes to Jim Gianopulis, CEO of Fox Filmed Entertainment, said Jessica Cohen, media analyst with Bank of America Merrill Lynch Global Research,
"[Gianopulis] is running an extremely tight ship," Cohen said in a phone interview. "Alongside Stacey Snider, co-chairman of the studio division, Fox's management team has the perfect balance of business and creativity that is its secret to success."
Gianopulis worked at Paramount before joining Fox, and currently oversees all its studios: Twentieth Century Fox, Fox Searchlight, Fox 2000, Fox Animation/Blue Sky Studios, Fox International Productions and Fox Home Entertainment. Snider was co-chairman of Steven Spielberg's DreamWorks (DWA) for eight years before coming to the studio.
"Fox hasn't had misses ... that team doesn't produce movies that lose money," Cohen said,
A promising group of films slated for release through 2016 are likely to help the company as it seeks to bolster its networks to compete with online streaming services like Netflix (NFLX) and more recently, Verizon's (VZ) Custom TV bundles.
Nonetheless, Fox must experiment with new technology and cater to the tastes of a diverse audience of moviegoers today - from children to millennials to older adults and retirees. The studio recently signed a five year, multi-picture agreement with tech manufacturer Barco to release films under the panoramic screen format, Barco Escape.