Earlier this year, Netflix drew the attention of Hollywood insiders when the streaming service leased a massive office complex on Sunset Boulevard. Now, to strengthen their presence in the show business capital of the world, Netflix has announced plans to build a multi-million dollar studio in the heart of Hollywood. These moves, together with several recent high-profile film rights acquisitions, are firmly positioning Netflix as a major contender against big-name Hollywood studios.
Many film and television studios move their productions based on where the based tax incentives can be found in order to save money. Judging from the astronomical budgets Netflix has been throwing at its original series and films, money is likely not an issue at all. According to Netflix Chief Content Officer Ted Sarandos, the move is intended to provide a consistent, stable home for the impressive roster of creative talent Netflix’s studios have assembled:
When you think about productions chasing tax credits all over the world, it puts the onus on the cast and crew who have to travel. You move to Los Angeles, or you grew up in L.A., because you wanted to be in show business — and then you have to move to New Orleans six or eight months a year. If people were enjoying their work, they would do better work. That’s been our own corporate philosophy.
While the majority of Netflix production will likely move to their new California studios, shows whose settings are vital to their stories such as Netflix originals House of Cards and Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt will still be filmed on location in Washington and New York, respectively. Several Netflix original shows such as Grace and Frankie, Ultimate Beastmaster, and The Ranch are already filming in the Hollywood/Los Angeles area, but studio space is getting tight – especially now that larger studios might be less willing to lease space to one of their biggest rivals.
If Netflix keeps up the consistent quality of their original films and series, the streaming service could alter the future of not only television, but also film. By establishing a permanent home among the biggest names in the industry, Netflix could tip the entertainment industry balance in its favor.