Netflix has been making a huge push for its original content library lately, moving aggressively toward its new position in the industry as host and creator of programming. As of now, according to CFO David Wells, Netflix is spending about $8 billion this year on original and licensed content and will bring its total number of original shows and movies up to north of 700 (a figure that includes returning seasons of past original series).
At least 80 of these were planned last year to be new movies, with another 80 coming from international productions like the German, Stranger Things-esque Dark. Those that've already premiered this year include projects like the sci-fi fun of Black Mirror's latest season, Altered Carbon, and Mute.
Along with these are the new pieces of media coming from producer Ryan Murphy, whom Netflix nabbed from more traditional television in a five-year exclusive deal. The American Horror Story producer will be bringing his trademark productivity to the service alongside Shonda Rhimes, who’s under a similar deal after being wooed from ABC.
All this spending is being matched by increased marketing to promote that spending. Increasing marketing spending by over 50 percent should help us hear about this huge flood of shows and movies before the day they launch, which will increase their impact and thus attract new subscribers.
Netflix’s investment in creating new content isn’t there just to be there, but is there to be of a high quality in order to get new customers. That’s seen with Murphy, who’s one of the few name-brand TV creatives working today, making the jump. That means we’ll see his kind of weird, horror-adjacent, totally campy spin on the world for the next five years alongside genre fare of similar caliber — assuming Netflix’s gamble pays off, that is.