Streaming juggernaut Netflix have revealed to Bloomberg their most streamed original movies. The list is interesting for multiple reasons, especially considering Netflix does not usually share its stats.
Here are the Top 10 Most Streamed Netflix Original Movies:
- Extraction – 99 million streams
- Bird Box – 89m streams
- Spenser Confidential – 85m streams
- 6 Underground – 83m streams
- Murder Mystery – 83m streams
- The Irishman – 64m streams
- Triple Frontier – 63m streams
- The Wrong Missy – 59m streams
- The Platform – 56m streams
- The Perfect Date – 55m streams
Topping off the list is this year’s Extraction starring Chris Hemsworth (Thor: Ragnarok). The film reunited the global star with producers Joe and Anthony Russo, who directed Avengers: Endgame, coincidentally another record breaker – the highest grossing theatrical film of all time. Of course, the current global situation may be responsible for this film charting so high, as audiences have only had access to streaming for new releases due to theaters being closed. This film was released during the lock down period.
Some of the most acclaimed Netflix originals have not made the list, such as Roma and Marriage Story, which were both heavy awards contenders. The exception to this would be Martin Scorsese’s crime drama The Irishman which was also nominated for a slew of awards, including 10 nominations at the 2020 Oscars.
One reason why this appeared on the list while the other two did not, could be due to the sheer amount of star power: Scorsese, De Niro, Pacino and Pesci to name a few. Audiences are likely familiar with their work and the crime genre, which has proven to be popular in Hollywood for much of the past century with classics such as The Godfather and Goodfellas. Star power is a key factor in a lot of the other films on the list, with most having a big name in the leading role, such as Ryan Reynolds (Deadpool 2; The Hitman’s Bodyguard) in 6 Underground, Sandra Bullock (Demolition Man) in Bird Box and Adam Sandler (Uncut Gems) in Murder Mystery.
Unlike The Irishman however, a lot of the other films are more action based as opposed to dialogue focused. Triple Frontier, Extraction, Spenser Confidential and 6 Underground are all action films. These are more friendly to casual audiences and therefore reach a wider appeal. This suggests that these films are more entertaining to viewers who just want to watch a film in a leisurely way.
Another commonality some of the films share is their global appeal. Extraction, for example, takes place in India. 6 Underground features a diverse cast and multiple locations, such as Florence and Hong Kong. Murder Mystery is a globe-trotting crime thriller and Triple Frontier is primarily set in South America. Their popularity not only illustrates the importance of representation, but also proves how much of a global player Netflix has become in targeting specific national demographics. Further proof of this is The Platform, which is a Spanish language film.
Overall, we can draw a few conclusions from the data provided. First and foremost, Netflix are relentless in releasing successful original content – they are clearly succeeding and proving that despite the escalation of the streaming wars, they are still sat securely at the top. The data also suggests Netflix follow a formula to make their films as popular as possible. This formula produces films that have a global appeal through a diversity in cast and location, as well as a focus on action, which casts a wider net on the potential audience. Additionally, the inclusion of a big name actor usually results in better viewing figures as it provides familiarity, the service’s latest action hit The Old Guard starring Charlize Theron being a recent example.
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