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Landgraf: drama output to peak in 2016 or 2017

Scripted-logo-460_2Fargo season 2FX Networks CEO John Landgraf has predicted a peak in the production of high-end drama television this year or next.

Landgraf has been outspoken in his belief that too much television is currently being produced, and yesterday at FX’s TCA presentation added further colour.

He upgraded recently-released FX data that suggested 409 scripted series had been produced in 2015 to 412.

“Twenty-sixteen or 2017 will represent peak TV in America, and then we will see a decline,” he told reporters and critics, adding there was likely to be another increase this year on the record-setting number of series launched in 2015.

Following that, Landgraf said there would not be a dramatic “collapse”, but that there would be “a contraction”. FX’s current drama slate includes The Americans, American Horror Story and Fargo (pictured).

The TCAs have been notable this year for the heated debate around streaming service Netflix and its steadfast refusal to release ratings data.

Weighing in on the debate, Landgraf said: “I can understand the debate of secrecy sparked by Edward Snowden. There’s probably some data, some information that is a national security issue so the apparatus can keep secret. I don’t feel the same way about TV data. It’s like sports scores, it should be public.”

TBI has quizzed senior international executives over the future of drama television as part of our TV’s Big Questions report. The result of our poll can be found here