It's hard to believe that Netflix's (NFLX 2.90%) first original series, House of Cards, came out just six years ago. The streaming platform's rise in the content market has been that quick and aggressive.
Just in the past month, Netflix announced that the third season of its hit original series Stranger Things would be released July 4. The first episode of the show's second season had nearly 16 million viewers within the first three days back in the fall of 2017, and just the teaser trailer for the third season has racked up over three million views in its first three days on YouTube.
Netflix also recently announced a sequel to its hit romcom To All The Boys I Loved Before. The company had previously revealed that this movie had become one of its most-watched original films, even though it was just released this past summer. Netflix also revealed that nearly 50% of viewers who watched the film rewatched it at least once.
However, while these are impressive figures concerning two of Netflix's most beloved titles, I've found two figures that are even more impressive. In fact, I think they summarize Netflix's domination of Hollywood, and why 2019 is about to be the year of Netflix.
1. Bird Box viewers: 45 million
The dystopian film Bird Box, starring Academy Award winner Sandra Bullock, was released on Dec. 13. Netflix said over 45 million accounts watched the thriller in the first seven days it was available on the platform. In fact, no movie that's been released exclusively on Netflix's platform has had a more successful first week of viewership according to a tweet from Netflix.
When you consider that Netflix has about 140 million subscribers, that means that about one-third of its total accounts saw this movie within seven days. That's a pretty powerful statement. And that 45 million is most likely a low estimate. That's because each "account" may have had multiple viewers or views, yet was only counted as one, a spokesperson told The Verge. When you consider how many people watch movies in groups, especially over the holidays, this is probably a conservative count.
To put this into perspective, AP reported that if 45 million people had paid to see this film in theaters, that would have translated into about $400 million in ticket sales in the movie's opening week. For comparison's sake, consider the similar dystopian thriller A Quiet Place, released in theaters by Viacom's (NASDAQ: VIAB) Paramount Pictures in April 2018. Even though the film was released nine months ago to near-universal praise, it has still only grossed $340 million worldwide. Netflix's Bird Box could have trumped that sales figure in one week of ticket sales. This explains why directors, actors, and producers are practically begging to work with Netflix.
Took off my blindfold this morning to discover that 45,037,125 Netflix accounts have already watched Bird Box -- best first 7 days ever for a Netflix film! pic.twitter.com/uorU3cSzHR-- Netflix Film (@NetflixFilm) December 28, 2018
2. Golden Globe wins: 5
Netflix won five awards at the Golden Globes on Jan. 6. That's more than any other network or streaming service. If Bird Box's viewership didn't convince you that Netflix is beating Hollywood at its own game, then maybe its Golden Globes sweep will.
Netflix's The Kominsky Method won best TV comedy series and best actor in a TV comedy for Michael Douglas, while the BBC's The Bodyguard (which Netflix airs outside of the U.K. and Ireland) won the best actor in a TV drama award for Richard Madden. In addition, the Mexican movie Roma won two awards for best director of a motion picture and best motion picture in a foreign language.
Netflix's stock gained as much as 6.5% on Jan. 7, the day after the evening awards ceremony took place, with Netflix's CCO Ted Sarandos in attendance. The streaming giant also received positive commentary from Piper Jaffray on Jan. 7.
So if Netflix is already beating traditional Hollywood at the big-time Golden Globe Awards and could hypothetically be beating it at the Box Office, then I'd say Netflix is dominating Hollywood. And I'd conclude that 2019 is about to be the year of Netflix.