GoT creator duo leaves HBO to join Netflix
Game of Thrones creators have accepted Netflix’s offer to join the streaming giant. According to Deadline, after multiple meetings with a total of six studios, GoT creators David Benioff and D.B. Weiss have signed a “nine-figure” deal with Netflix and will now be developing, writing and directing TV and film content exclusively for it.
While some sources say the exact worth of the signed deal is not known, The Hollywood Reporter claims it to be about $200 million. Netflix offered to bet such a huge investment after Benioff and Weiss proved their worth by creating one of the world’s most successful shows, Game of Thrones, which received massive acclaim across the globe. The streaming company’s contract with the GoT creators is an addition to its trend of expensive deals; it has earlier signed up creators of popular shows, American Horror Story and Grey’s Anatomy, too.
After the multiyear agreement, the GoT creators will no more be working with anyone but Netflix; however their commitment with Disney for making a Star Wars movie, which would come out in 2022 and will most likely be a part of a series or trilogy, remains an exception.
Benioff and Weiss, in a joint statement, reminisced their good time spent at HBO and expressed gratitude to everyone for making them feel at home. The duo also thanked Netflix for inviting them for a collaboration. On the other side, Netflix’s chief content officer, talking to The Hollywood Reporter, told that they are excited to welcome the master storytellers to Netflix and are impatient to see their impressive creativity bringing out wonders for the audience.
Netflix won this contract after beating Amazon and Disney, who were in a bidding war to secure gigantic deals with successful showrunners. Amazon, though signed up the Westworld’s creator duo for $150 million, could not offer a bigger sum to Benioff and Weiss. While Disney’s hopes to get them to work for its FX network and its upcoming streaming service, Disney+, remained unfulfilled, although it succeeded in getting them onboard for the Star Wars series.
Ironically, in recent past, Netflix has failed in making the expected profits; the increased subscription charges and many of its shows and films going flop have lead to a lower subscriber growth. Benioff and Weiss too received much criticism after the grand finale of the epic fantasy show, Game of Thrones, could not make up to the expectations of fans worldwide. However, the final season of the show, despite a petition to remake it with “competent writers” signed by around 1.7 million people, still earned a record number of Emmy nominations making it a hit nonetheless.
It is believed that Netflix’s strategy to cut off average rating shows and instead heavily investing in deals with successful showrunners is its way out of the downward stride and an attempt to compensate for the recent losses through producing hits.