Online dramas have experienced explosive growth this year. But unlike the usual soap operas on TV, dramas broadcast on online platforms are becoming the latest trend. Soap opera production teams are increasingly leaning towards the internet as their main distribution channel.
Hou Hongliang is the head of an drama production company.
His team has produced some of China's most popular soap operas this year, Ode to Joy and Candle in The Tomb.
The team has invested heavily in the dramas, because of good market returns --- we are talking about billions of online hits.
"We've invested even more in season 2 of Ode to Joy, 150 million yuan in total, about 3 million each episode. Candle in the Tomb is about 5 to 6 million yuan per episode. "said Hou Hongliang.
Hou said the internet has taken up two thirds of the distribution channels this year. But only one year ago, the major distribution force was still TV.
Hou Hongliang said "Season 1 of Ode to Joy TV station was willing to pay a higher price, but for season 2, online platforms have already replaced TV as the highest bidders. "
The rise in internet dramas not only benefits producers, directors and actors, but authors as well, due to better protection of their intellectual property rights.
"Our income rises steadily every year. Now China has millions of writers active on online platforms. Thousands are earning over a million yuan per year, about 30 to 50 people are earning over 10 million yuan. "Author Tang Jia San Shao said.
If their novels are made into online dramas, the authors will usually get 5 percent to 10 percent dividend on profits, and 10 to 20 percent of equities.
As capital increasingly shifts to online platforms, the future of TV is looking even more clouded.