Vijaya Laxmi Tripura
Netflix is world’s largest VOD (video on demand) platform. It has a couple of Bangla contents which are produced by Impress Telefilms, a company that operates its own VOD named iflix.
Telefilm feature titled Komola Rocket directed by Noor Imran Mithu and another telefilm titled Tomari Dhaka (Sincerely Yours, Dhaka) are currently available on Netflix. Despite huge demand on Bangla contents, the world’s largest VOD platform is yet to include series of contents in Bangla, including web series, feature films etc.
Netflix, Inc, is an American media-services provider and production company headquartered in Los Gatos, California, founded in 1997 by Reed Hastings and Marc Randolph in Scotts Valley, California. The company’s primary business is its subscription-based streaming service which offers online streaming of a library of films and television programs, including those produced in-house. As of April 2019, Netflix had over 148 million paid subscriptions worldwide, including 60 million in the United States, and over 154 million subscriptions total including free trials. It is available worldwide except in mainland China (due to local restrictions), Syria, North Korea, and Crimea (due to U.S. sanctions). The company also has offices in India, Netherlands, Brazil, Japan, and South Korea. Netflix is a member of the Motion Picture Association (MPA).
Netflix’s initial business model included DVD sales and rental by mail, but Hastings abandoned the sales about a year after the company’s founding to focus on the initial DVD rental business. Netflix expanded its business in 2010 with the introduction of streaming media while retaining the DVD and Blu-ray rental business. The company expanded internationally in 2010 with streaming available in Canada followed by Latin America and the Caribbean. Netflix entered the content-production industry in 2012, debuting its first series Lilyhammer.
Since 2012, Netflix has taken more of an active role as producer and distributor for both film and television series, and to that end, it offers a variety of “Netflix Original” content through its online library. By January 2016, Netflix services operated in more than 190 countries. Netflix released an estimated 126 original series and films in 2016, more than any other network or cable channel. Their efforts to produce new content, secure the rights for additional content, and diversify through 190 countries have resulted in the company racking up billions in debt: $21.9 billion as of September 2017, up from $16.8 billion from the previous year. $6.5 billion of this is long-term debt, while the remaining is in long-term obligations. In October 2018, Netflix announced it would raise another $2 billion in debt to help fund new content like lost in space.
As of March 2020, Netflix offered just under 3,000 film titles for streaming on its U.S. service. This does not include multi-episode titles (series).
Bangla contents on Netflix
Despite huge demand, Netflix is yet to have contents for over 230 million Bangla-speaking audiences. Although it is learnt from various sources, the company is actively considering of having Bangla web series and films, mostly from Bangladesh, as there already are companies like HoiChoi, Zee5 etc., in India offering similar services to the Bangla-speaking population in West Bengal (in India) in particular.
It may be mentioned here that, for the past few weeks, Crown Entertainment, one of the largest production companies in Bangladesh has been considering offering contents to Netflix.