Chris Hemsworth-starrer Extraction was the most watched title on Netflix this past lockdown-hit quarter (between April and June). Nearly a hundred million Netflix subscribers — 99 million, Netflix said — tuned into Extraction during the first four weeks of its release. It was followed by season 4 of Money Heist — known as La Casa de Papel in Spanish-speaking markets — which brought in 65 million viewers during the first four weeks, as Netflix had projected it would back in April. That was followed by 59 million for The Wrong Missy, a rom-com produced by Adam Sandler’s Happy Madison.
Following that are the unscripted series Too Hot to Handle, and Floor is Lava — 51 million Netflix subscribers tuned in for the former, and a projected 37 million are expected to do so for the latter. Also in the mix were the Mindy Kaling co-created Never Have I Ever and Steve Carell-starrer Space Force, both at 40 million. The animated feature film The Willoughbys racked up 38 million viewers, while Spike Lee’s Vietnam drama Da 5 Bloods pulled in 27 million member households.
All the Netflix numbers — as previously noted — are for the first 28 days post-release. More importantly, these figures are based on Netflix’s new methodology introduced at the start of the year, which counts watching just two minutes of a movie or an episode as a view, which doesn’t actually tell us too much about how much people engaged with these movies and shows. Who here hasn’t stopped watching something after the first few minutes? But it’s the same methodology as is used by YouTube and BBC iPlayer too.
In its quarterly report, Netflix namechecked a few movies and TV shows it will release later in 2020, including the Aaron Sorkin-helmed The Trial of the Chicago 7; the animated The Sponge Bob Movie: Sponge on the Run that it acquired from Paramount this week for a global run, except the US and China; the upcoming third season of Cobra Kai along with the first two seasons that had originally premièred as a YouTube Original; and the Lily Collins-led Emily in Paris, which moves from Paramount Network to Netflix.
Beyond that, Netflix said it has begun resuming productions across the world, including Korea and Japan in Asia, France, Germany, Italy, Poland, Spain, and the UK in Europe, and parts of the US in North America. At the same time, there’s “uncertainty” for US productions due to the rising cases of COVID-19. That is also a problem in India and parts of Latin America, which Netflix called “more challenging” and where it hopes to restart filming later in 2020.
It still expects to have more originals in 2021 than 2020, despite the effects of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, though the second half of 2021 will have more of the big titles, Netflix said.
Can Netflix force Bollywood to reinvent itself? We discussed this on Orbital, our weekly technology podcast, which you can subscribe to via Apple Podcasts or RSS. You can also download the episode or just hit the play button below.