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That's a Wrap: Netflix's potential new venture could change filmmaking

Netflix has revolutionized the way we watch movies and television.

For only $7.99 a month, we marathon-watch TV shows in bulk and appreciate independent films even more. The site has allowed us to view the content we want without commercials, and now Netflix is going even further.

Netflix is in the dawn of revolutionizing entertainment once again. The executives at the streaming site are discussing plans to finance some of their own featured films. Rather than uploading films a year after their release when buzz has died down, they have reached the conclusion it may be wiser to produce films of their own.

By producing films, Netflix would probably be the only distributor, and once the film is released, it would have a large audience that could even be compared to those of big-budget films. More people would be willing to pay for Netflix to be one of the first to see some of their new features before being released on Blu-ray Disc.

Jessica Walter, who plays Lucille Bluth in Arrested Development, said at Comic Con recently that Netflix might be interested in producing an Arrested Development movie. Who knows, maybe it will mark the launch of a new style of moviemaking and marketing.

With House of Cards and season four of Arrested Development each earning three Primetime Emmy Awards this year and Orange is the New Black gaining more viewers and hours watched in the first week than both shows together, I can tell that Netflix only funds projects it knows will create a cult following. Not only that, if Netflix wants to make a film, I can bet it will be a must-watch. I think it would be interesting to see an Oscar in the future awarded to a Netflix original film.

Netflix also has something that the cinema doesn’t have. The fact that Netflix is viewed by browser, app or console gives users the ability to take film to the next level by making it more interactive. Filmmakers can increase the feeling of being a part of a film by having diverging storylines that the audience chooses. Most plots go in completely different directions depending on specific choices the characters make, so if the audience were to make the choice for them, then viewers would feel more involved and get to see the consequences of those decisions. This also allows people to potentially watch a film completely differently the second and third time they watch it. Of course, I don’t plan on being able to see anything like this in the near future because of the budget it would take to create a movie with so many alternative scenes, but the fact that Netflix is expanding and making its own films is definitely a step closer.

Abdalah El-Barrad is a freshman studying economics and a columnist for The Post. Do you like Netflix original series? Email him at

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