Winter is coming, but not at Netflix, as the streamer will be launching its reality show “Summer Job” – produced by Banijay Italia – before the end of the year.
“I am proud, because it’s an original show made for Italy,” said Tinny Andreatta, VP of content for Italy, at MIA Market on Wednesday.
Netflix has been eager to expand its unscripted content.
“We know our members love it. It’s a really exciting and growing area for us,” added Larry Tanz, VP of content for EMEA. Mentioning some recent successes from “Young, Famous & African” to “I Am Georgina,” both coming back for a second season, as well as new Spanish offering “Who Likes My Follower?”
Docu-series are also having a moment, it was stated, with the launch of Mark Lewis’ “Vatican Girl: The Disappearance of Emanuela Orlandi” already generating controversy.
“It’s a very sensitive show,” noted Andreatta.
“When we launched ‘SanPa: Sins of the Savior,’ we felt there was an audience for this kind of shows and competence in the market, both from the production side and from the talent side.”
But Netflix also intends to invest more in “big films,” said Andreatta, treating the audience to the first peek of “Robbing Mussolini,” which will premiere at Rome Film Fest on Saturday.
Directed by Renato De Maria – also behind the streamer’s 2019 drama “The Ruthless” – and described as a “true-ish story of a legendary heist,” it will see a group of misfits trying to steal Mussolini’s treasure. Matilda De Angelis and Pietro Castellitto star.
Spotlighting stories based on true events, adaptations from big IPs and “anti-hero narratives,” Andreatta also teased “The Lying Life of Adults,” based on a novel by Elena Ferrante. The series will premiere in November.
“[This show] proves how much we want to invest in big authors and directors that are also famous abroad. Director Edoardo De Angelis delivers a strong vision of Naples in the 1990s. His voice blends perfectly with Ferrante’s masterpiece.”
“Everything Calls for Salvation” – set to launch on Oct. 14. – will mark another high-profile adaptation, this time from Daniele Mencarelli’s award-winning autobiographical novel.
With its complex protagonist, sentenced to a week of mandatory treatment in a psychiatric ward after an angry outburst, the show exemplifies Netflix’s desire to “be connected to the spirit of the present,” she noted.
As underlined by both panelists, the strength of Netflix is tied to the possibility of investing in local content.
“In order to be successful internationally, we have to be successful with our local audiences first, connect with its needs and desires. I think the quality of Italian content is quite high, but it was difficult to export it. Now, with subs and dubs, it’s possible to have it all over the world. It’s something that’s new and revolutionary,” she said.
“When I joined the company eight years ago, we were trying to commission shows with very little local knowledge and very little expertise. Now, it’s totally different,” agreed Tanz.
“We are close to the creators and talk to them in their own language. We see a whole different type of storytelling, where it doesn’t have to be in English, it doesn’t have to be from Hollywood to reach the world. It can be very specific and very authentic.”
But variety is still important.
“Our members want to watch ‘Money Heist” one day, then ‘Young, Famous & African,’ then ‘Too Hot to Handle.’ That’s just my watchlist, by the way,” he laughed.
“People ask me what my favorite show on Netflix is. Right now, it’s ‘The Empress’ from Germany. But I just got back from Warsaw, where we opened a new office and have a hit show called ‘High Water.’ So that’s my favorite too.”
“Hopefully, you will have enough to watch in the next few weeks.”