Still, at a time when business is tough all over in the entertainment industry, there is a lot of gratitude for a deep-pocketed buyer that is snapping up an array of material, much of which might not find a home elsewhere. Netflix and its chief content officer Ted Sarandos are at once a savior, offering a giant gush of money to license shows that in some cases were past their prime or even out of production, and a terrifying competitor to studios.
“Out of the blue Netflix comes into the market and says, ‘We’re going to give you a number [to license a network show],’ ” says one television agent. “For the studios, it was, ‘Holy shit. Do we even need a cable sale?’ They all got addicted to crack. Nobody really thought they’d be a competitor on the originals market. They used stuff from the studios and became important. Now you see the backlash.”
It’s important to understand who’s not scared of Netflix: the actors, writers, directors and everyone else behind the great shows Netflix is buying. Creative people with talent who create great content have nothing to worry about.
From interviews I’ve seen with people who have worked with Netflix, they all say it’s great. Netflix gives them free rein over everything and they don’t meddle in the process (as it should be).