Netflix has announced that it is making a big investment in 2018. They plan to release approximately 80 original films through next year, vying to make similar strides as they did with original shows. When compared to the output in Hollywood of films, 80 movies does not seem like a lot. However, Netflix’s movie releases have been slower and only recently gained traction. This year was different. Chief content officer Ted Sarandos states that the diversity of their content is what has been driving the success they’ve had so far.
According to Sarandos, the new films will range widely in their content from, “the million-dollar Sundance hit, all the way up to something on a much larger scale such as Bright at the end of this year or The Irishman, which is currently in production.” Bright stars Will Smith in a cop action-thriller with a budget of $90 million. The Irishman, on the other hand, has a $100 million budget and comes with more A-list talent in the form of Robert De Niro.
The content of the newest films’ has not been announced, but Netflix hopes to produce more original material. The plan is to raise their spending budget from $6 billion to anywhere between $7-8 billion.
This report comes on the heels of Netflix announcing subscription pricing going up for the first time in two years. The most popular plan of $9.99 a month is going up to $10.99 a month; the premium plan which allows four screens to play simultaneously is going up from $11.99 to $13.99.
Despite a correlation in the uptick in price and the budget, CFO David Wells clarified to investors that “there’s no timing correlation between [the] intent to grow content and to grow content spending and the price increases.”
Over their third quarter, Netflix made 30% more in revenue than from the same period the year prior. A large portion of this growth came from larger international member numbers. Despite the rise in profits, Sarandos addressed the departure of Disney and the competitiveness of the market, stating that Netflix was combating this by, “creating content that our members can’t live without. Whether or not one of our partners decides to produce for us or compete with us, that’s really a choice that they have to make based on their own business.”