A strong piece in the FT[£] here from John Gapper, outlining how strong SVoD investment in locally-set programmes may be a mirage – an attempt to build the subscriber base that can subsequently be fed content that is less rooted in the places that it is watched.
SVoDs are swamping the industry with investment at the moment – recent posts on this blog are marvelling at Netflix’s vast splash, but Gapper reminds us that for the $17bn Netflix are pouring into films and TV programmes, Disney are spending $30bn (link to Forbes [£]).
“The economics of streaming encourage globalisation. A series that attracts a devoted audience solely in its home country helps to build subscribers there and serves a purpose. But the streamers are always hunting for what Greg Peters, Netflix’s chief operating officer, calls “leverage against that local investment” — programmes that will travel.”
Referring to the French Netflix drama Lupin (the most-watched non-English language series on Netflix), he says…
“It was very entertaining and sophisticated but despite its French mise-en-scène, it felt oddly American.”