Netflix CEO Pushing Creative Team to 'Take More Risks'

Its high-budget epic-drama "Marco Polo" was also cancelled at the tail-end of a year ago after two seasons.

Hastings says that, going forward, Netflix will increase its originals budget "a lot".

It's an excellent PR spin to add the caveat that there are just too many good shows, but the sentiment is still there: Netflix needs to cut back and focus on higher quality. While the company's position hasn't changed - it still believes the principles behind net neutrality are fundamentally correct - Netflix isn't almost as outspoken now that the FCC is throwing out the rules that helped protect it back in the day.

Netflix has only canceled six of its original series so far: Lilyhammer, Hemlock Grove, Marco Polo, The Get Down, Sense8, and Bloodline, with the latter's cancelation stemming from a new tax law in Florida (where the show filmed) that made it no longer financially viable. "We've canceled very few shows", he continued.

The change could bring Netflix into the same realm as the average television network, where beloved shows are cancelled and abandoned despite their cliff-hanger end. The controversy drew attention and may mean that people will know about a movie that they may never have discovered or watched. Sure, there are also much more traditional Netflix originals like Flaked and Real Rob, but Netflix originals tend to be fairly diverse and touch upon relatively sensitive issues as a rule. "They're trying to be Walmart".

But with the recent cancellations, it does seem as if the company is making a ― to quote one of the most popular shows on the service ― "pivot".

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The annual budget for Netflix originals is already $6 billion for 2017; the idea that it will grow even more is pretty wonderful.

And in a bit of a surprise, Hastings offered a hint about how Netflix now determines success or failure.

Hastings was asked if Netflix wants to leverage its subscriber base for something other than the company's core content offering.

"The Trump FCC is going to unwind the rules no matter what anybody says", Hastings argues.

Netflix's rapid rise from a mail order DVD rental service in 1997 to become the dominant global video streaming service has taken the world by storm and now they have almost 100 million people on their books.


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