Video Game Stocks Soaring Above Most Major Media Companies

2013 DreamWorks Animation LLC.
"Mr. Peabody & Sherman"

The sector benefited from an enthusiastic response to June's E3 conference.

This story first appeared in the July 25 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine.

Halfway through 2014, major media stocks, with the exception of Walt Disney and Time Warner -- up a respective 13.7 and 9.2 percent -- are lagging behind the S&P 500, which is up 6.4 percent. Comcast is up 5.9 percent, Viacom is down 1.5 percent, CBS is down 3.4 percent and Sony is down 3.6 percent.

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Much better entertainment investments can be found in video games, which benefited from an enthusiastic response to June's E3 conference. Investors are embracing new Electronic Arts CEO Andrew Wilson, and competitor Activision Blizzard has a new Call of Duty coming Nov. 4. Outside of video games, digital media is a mixed bag.

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Twitter has plunged on fears of slow growth, but Facebook is up 21.4 percent and Netflix is up 19.5 percent. Also among the losers is DreamWorks Animation, whose Mr. Peabody & Sherman was deemed a failure, and Discovery, which has prompted fears of slow ad growth and rising costs.