Netflix chief of content Ted Sarandos says there is one big show the world is missing, and hinted that Netflix could be the one to produce it.
“What’s missing on the global stage is a really great scripted series about contemporary life in the Middle East,” Sarandos said at the Dubai International Film Festival, according to The Hollywood Reporter. “Most depictions outside of the Middle East are either historical or portray caricatures of what life in the Middle East would be.”
Netflix has said it will double its output of original content to 31 scripted series next year, and part of this push could eventually be the accurate depiction of life in the Middle East that Sarandos was talking about. Netflix will launch in the region sometime before the end of 2016, as a piece of an aggressive international expansion plan.
Sarandos said that Netflix is already in contact with local content producers in the Middle East, according the The Hollywood Reporter, and that the company plans to run a series of content workshops in March of 2016.
Sarandos only tangentially referenced the censorship issues that persist in parts of the Middle East, especially around sexual content, and that could potentially hinder the type of honest and open show Sarandos described. “We want to be good global citizens and observe local laws,” he said, but he also added that internet regulation is usually less restrictive than for TV and movies.