After Dominating the Emmy Field, Netflix is Expanding Film Distribution in an Attempt to Win Some Oscars
Netflix, the billion-dollar streaming service which just surpassed HBO in Emmy nominations for the first time in a decade, is eyeing wider and more frequent distribution for their original films.
While releases like The Cloverfield Paradox and The Kissing Booth are probably not going to see much Oscar love, Netflix is expanding its film distribution for two particular films: Alfonso Cuaron's Roma and Paul Greengrass' 22 July. After 2015's Beasts of No Nation was completely shut out of the Oscar race, Netflix is sure to not let it happen again with such high-class, award-winning directors like Cuaron and Greengrass.
Their upcoming release Roma was shot on a digital camera reportedly best suited for premium formats such as Cinemark's XD or 70mm with Dolby Atmos sound. Watching the film on your 60-inch Smart TV most likely won't give you that 70mm experience that cinephiles love so much, so a full theatrical run seems well suited for the streaming giant.
Cuaron and Greengrass are both obviously open to the idea, and if one of them scores a nomination or even win, it will definitely bring more high-end A-listers to Netflix's door. From a directorial standpoint, getting the amount of creative control Netflix gives, having so many people have free access to your film, and being able to compete in the awards race is a win-win-win.
The whole situation of course stems from the fact that films need to be screened in order to be considered for awards, particularly Oscars. Netflix's at-home streaming service is great up until awards season rolls around and they're incapable of competing. After the Beasts of No Nation blunder, Netflix is sure to widen their releases and try to get their foot in the door on a wider-scale for their at-home releases.
This upcoming season featuring Roma and 22 July could set a positive precedent for the Academy Awards going forward-- even if some pretentious film-heads are turned off by the idea.