Posted by Nick Poyner on March 29, 2011 at 9:39 am
It looks like Netflix is this week’s Charlie Sheen. People are either loving it or hating it, but either way it’s making news.
Netflix has signed on to release its own original programming with the Kevin Spacey starring, David Fincher producing House of Cards. There are a few things notable about this. One it will be the first straight to streaming one-hour drama; it will not be aired anywhere else but Netflix (and the billion sites that steal it and put it up online immediately after.) This is a spit in the face to those networks who allowed Netflix to stream their shows already (more on that later.)
What really blows my mind is the price this comes at for Netflix. $100 million dollars!!!! Think about it. While Spacey and Fincher are both well-respected and talented men, they seem like a lot to bank on. Especially considering Netflix has not seen a pilot, nor is there one. They have signed on for twenty-six episodes without a single thing produced. High profile names can easily produce a television bomb. But this isn’t television? Or is it? Is it a movie? It doesn’t matter. $100 million dollars!!!!
This is coming along with two other recent Netflix stories. One, Showtime and Starz are changing their deals with the online store from original programming to the movies they can stream. Showtime is pulling first-run shows starting this summer. That means if you’re looking to catch up on Dexter, you should probably do it now. Starz, once a huge supporter of the online service, will now have a 90-day restriction on their shows. To present a comparison, the criminally underrated Party Down could be seen the next day. Maybe it’s not all bad though.
Miramax is reportedly not through with the retailer yet. They are close to a $100 million deal with the Netflix that would include Pulp Fiction, Clerks, and The English Patient. $100 million dollars…more!!!! For us, the consumer, that’s great. Miramax has tons of hits, which could potentially draw in new subscribers. However, this is another $100 million. Subscribers only have to pay $9 or so a month, and that’s if you’re not just borrowing your friends account.
Netflix’s fate has yet to be seen, and it probably won’t for a while. They’re making big moves, which, if nothing else, is an experiment everyone will learn from. Best of luck, Netflix.