Microsoft ends flirtation with Hollywood and original shows – source

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Director Steven Spielberg is shown on screen discussing his partnership on Halo the television Series during the Xbox One launch unveiling Microsoft's new Xbox in Redmond

By Ronald Grover and Lisa Richwine LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Microsoft Corp intends to wind down Xbox Entertainment Studios, a source familiar with its plans said, becoming the first major tech company to give up on making original shows in a battle for the living room couch. The studio, set up in 2012 under then-Chief Executive Officer Steve Ballmer, said in April it had committed to several projects including “Humans,” a drama co-produced with UK broadcaster Channel 4, and “Halo,” a digital feature based on the best-selling Xbox game. Hollywood director and producer Ridley Scott is making “Halo” and it will survive the cutback, according to the source familiar with Microsoft’s plans who was not authorized to speak on the record. Microsoft was among several tech companies that raced to add original TV-like content after the release in February 2013 of Netflix Inc’s “House of Cards,” a political thriller that built buzz for streaming video and earned the first Emmy nominations for a show delivered exclusively online.


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