Little Steven Looks to Put Netflix on E(asy) Street in Mob Comedy
Steven Van Zandt of the E Street Band and "Sopranos" fame is at the center of Netflix’s strategy to regain its edge in the streaming video and DVD rental business.
Mr. Van Zandt will star in the first original series, "Lilyhammer", produced by Netflix and available only to subscribers of the site. It is about an East Coast mobster who turns state evidence and is forced to go into the witness protection program in Norway.
"It’s a very quirky, funny, serious show that I think people are really going to love," Ted Sarandos, chief content officer for Netflix told TheWrap. "It’s a really fun thing to watch, because it is a really familiar character in a totally unfamiliar place. It’s ‘Northern Exposure’ meets ‘Sopranos.’"
Netflix has seen a drop off in its subscriber base in the past year as it has tinkered with higher prices and changes in its subscription options. The company made the decision to move into original programming to give it an edge over other services as well as a hedge against companies such as HBO, should they decide to get into the business.
Interestingly, Netflix intends to offer all eight episodes of the one-hour show simultaneously.
"If you love the first episode, there is no need to wait until next week, or to set a DVR, to catch the next one," said Mr. Sarandos in a statement.
According to the Los Angeles Times, more than 60 percent of the content viewed on Netflix’s streaming service is television shows.
- Netflix Locks Release Date for Mobster Series ‘Lilyhammer’ – TheWrap
- Netflix to premiere all eight episodes of ‘Lilyhammer’ simultaneously – Los Angeles Times
- Netflix To Premiere Original Series In Feburary – Dow Jones Newswires/The Wall Street Journal
Discussion Questions: Is original programming the future of movie and television show rentals? Will Netflix regain some of its lost momentum with the debut of “Lilyhammer”?