Watch out “Real Housewives,” “Big Brother,” and “Survivor” — Netflix is getting into the reality TV business.
“We are embarking on a lot of unscripted programming,” Netflix’s chief content officer Ted Sarandos said during a Royal Television Society event in London, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
According to Sarandos, the streaming company has about 20 unscripted shows at various points in the production process. He even named one type of reality show that the company is especially interested in.
“The newest thing we’re encroaching on are competition shows,” Sarandos said.
As an example, Sarandos pointed to Netflix’s “Ultimate Beastmaster” project with Sylvester Stallone attached as an executive producer. Its first competition show, “Ultimate Beastmaster,” will feature 108 contestants from around the world as they tackle physically tough obstacle courses until only one man is left standing.
This push into non-scripted television is just part of Netflix’s bid to double its number of original programs for the fifth year in a row. Currently, it has 30 scripted originals in production, in addition to 35 kids programs and 60 documentaries in different stages of production.
Original productions are attractive to Netflix, The Hollywood Reporter points out, because they are watched more than licensed shows and help to build Netflix’s brand as a quality entertainment destination.
“This year, we had 17 different shows for 54 Emmys,” Sarandos highlighted.
At least one person in entertainment doesn’t see Netflix’s original programming growth as a good thing. FX president John Landgraf believes there are too many shows on TV as it is, and feels quality will suffer with increased programming.
FX has something like 17 shows currently and Landgraf believes he may be able to keep up with 20 or 21 maximum.
“You could give me all the money in the world and I couldn’t supervise 71 shows the way I do ours,” he said.