Yesterday Ted Sarandos, Netflix’s “content chief,” whose job title makes him sound like a blogger, announced the streaming service is planning on releasing 80 original movies next year. That amounts to roughly three movies every 2 weeks.
It’s a big gambit for a company still in the fledgling stages of functioning as a de facto distributing studio. But they’ve got the money to burn, and a lot of the experiments have paid off so far. Okja is a huge, silly movie that most studios wouldn’t have touched. Gerald’s Game is one of the genre highlights of the year. The newly released Noah Baumbach film The Meyerowitz Stories is doing quite well, too, as part of Adam Sandler’s never-ending cycle of “make one good movie, earn some goodwill, and then immediately make 20 bad movies.”
There also have been some real misfires, like the horror dud Death Note and, you know, a bunch of those aforementioned Adam Sandler movies. In fact, a cursory glance at all the movies released by Netflix so farhas a pretty alarming number of “huh?”s.
One of the big hurdles for Netflix to jump will be the reception to Bright, a big-budget fantasy sci-fi with an A-list cast. The previews so far have been…questionable, and might end up reining in some of Netflix’s more ambitious dreams of toppling the Hollywood blockbuster machine. But in any case, gear yourself up for dozens and dozens of new releases added to your queue next year. And don’t forget to actually go to the movies now and again. It’s fun and you can buy a diet Coke for $7.50 if you want. Can’t do that at home.