Netflix said it extended its deal with prolific producer Shonda Rhimes, whose series Bridgerton smashed viewership records for the streaming service.
The new deal covers Rhimes, her company Shondaland and her producing partner Betsy Beers.
The arrangement gives Netflix and Shondaland Media the opportunity to exclusively produce, stream and distribute feature films as well as gaming and virtual reality content, It also includes a branding and merchandise deal, with live events and experiences contemplated.
“Shonda makes shows that get the world talking, and we’ve seen the power of her creative vision to translate in any language. Shonda’s a brilliant businesswoman and a terrific partner and we’re thrilled to expand our relationship with her for years to come,” Bela Bajaria, head of global TV at Netflix, said. “On a personal note, I’m especially invested in the mentorship and pipeline programs we will support, as I’ve seen firsthand how the power of mentorship can transform careers and lives — and I’m excited by the possibility of what that can look like in Shonda’s hands.”
Another project set in what Netflix calls the Bridgerton-verse is a limited series looking at the rise of a young Queen Charlotte.
The series Inventing Anne, created by Rhimes is set to release in 2022. It stars Julia Garner, Anna Chlumsky, Katie Lowes, Laverne Cox and Alexis Floyd.
“Today, Shondaland at Netflix is creatively thriving, profitable as an asset and engaging audiences around the world with stories that fearlessly challenge viewers and keep them highly entertained all at once,” said Rhimes. “Ted [Sarandos, Netflix co-CEO], Bela and the entire team at Netflix have been tremendous partners during every step of the process, supporting my creative vision and showing a continued dedication to the innovation that has made Netflix such a powerhouse. The Shondaland team and I are thrilled and excited to be expanding our relationship with our content partners at Netflix.”
As part of the deal, Netflix said it will support Shondaland in creating DEIA (Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, Accessibility) programs.
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Jon has been business editor of Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He focuses on revenue-generating activities, including advertising and distribution, as well as executive intrigue and merger and acquisition activity. Just about any story is fair game, if a dollar sign can make its way into the article. Before B+C, Jon covered the industry for TVWeek, Cable World, Electronic Media, Advertising Age and The New York Post. A native New Yorker, Jon is hiding in plain sight in the suburbs of Chicago.