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Is Netflix Heaven For Writers?

by Vincent Salera 07 Aug 2017

Lately I can not get enough of the great content created and offered by Netflix, they truly have disrupted the entertainment production industry by giving a voice to many creative story tellers who may never have had their work produced and offering them a new model that takes risks. IMHO, Netflix is quickly becoming the new HBO.

Netflix was founded in 1997 by Reed Hastings and Marc Randolph in Scotts Valley, California, their original business model was that of selling and renting DVDs by mail. In 2007, Netflix introduced streaming media, while retaining the DVD and Blu-ray rental service expanding internationally to Canada in 2010 and in over 190 countries by January 2016.

As of July 2017, Netflix has 103.95 million+ subscribers worldwide with about 51.92 million+ based in the USA.

Over 126 “Netflix Original” series or films have been produced by Netflix in 2016 which is more than any network or cable channel. They seem to “see” the big picture through the “writing” potential and not just the financial bottom line. Since Netflix is not driven by advertising, writers can really go all out with stories that can explore any topic no matter how taboo an advertiser on network TV may turn down.

How about Grace & Frankie where two golden aged women are left by their husbands to marry each other? Not only is this show funny with it’s A-list cast including Lilly Tomlin, Jane Fonda, and Martin Sheen, it is also a heartwarming story of the trials and tribulations life throws our way no matter what age we are.

Marvel’s Daredevil is just one of the many Marvel properties such as Jessica Jones, Iron Fist,Luke Cage and The Punisher being produced by Netflix. Each show is dark, character driven and highly addictive, I have found myself watching until 2 a.m. more than once since all episodes are released on the same day.

RIVERDALE is based on the Archie Comics but much darker with the familiar characters such as Archie Andrews, Jughead Jones, Betty Cooper, Veronica Lodge, and Josie and the Pussycats created in 1941 by publisher John L. Goldwater and artist Bob Montana. They were able to capture the original comic characteristics of each character while bringing them into a dramatic contemporary setting. The show has already been picked up for another season at 22 episodes instead of the usual 13.

Ozark is my latest “must watch in one sitting”, it stars and is directed by Jason Bateman along with Laura Linney.
After a money-laundering scheme goes wrong, a financial planner is forced to relocate his family from Chicago to a summer resort in the Ozarks in order to keep them safe all while trying to reconnect with his cheating wife.

Okja feels like a graphic novel come to life and follows a young girl named Mija, caretaker to Okja – a massive animal resembling a giant pig in the mountains of South Korea. When a multinational conglomerate take Okja to New York with big plans that include mass meat production, Mija immediately sets out on a rescue mission.

There is an ever growing number of A-List writers, producers, and actors joining the Netflix revolution by either acting, writing, producing, or all with new productions launching every month.

The legendary writer and producer Norman Lear of such groundbreaking 1970s sitcoms as All in the Family, Sanford and Son, One Day at a Time, The Jeffersons, Good Times, and Maude has returned by rebooting his 1970’s hit show One Day At A Time earlier this year on Netflix.

The show still follows a single mother but in this version the family is Cuban with the mother, Penelope Alvarez (Justina Machado), a newly single Army Nursing Corps raising her two children with the support of her mother Lydia (Rita Moreno).

Although a comedy, it has many dramatic moments including many unresolved issues from Penelope’s time in the Army in Afghanistan. I watched all the episodes and they were sensational, just what you would expect from Norman Lear and now Netflix.

The original theme song “This is It” was used but re-recorded by Emilio Estefan and Gloria Estefan giving the new show an immediate Cuban flavor.

Netflix is leading through innovation, guts, vision, and money…giving their audience exactly what they want… a great story written by writers with no barriers or restrictions! And getting that story streaming to as many people in the world as possible via the web, TV, or on a smartphone. Heaven for writers is waiting for you, get your story out there!

Vincent Salera