[Excerpted from Letter to Shareholders]
We launched our first original scripted TV series in 2012 and we've since expanded our original
programming effort to many additional categories, from all over the world. Our goal is to be everyone's
first choice for entertainment because of the variety and quality of our titles. And despite the
COVID-related production delays in 2020, we were able to deliver an exciting portfolio of titles in Q2'21
that exemplify this ambition.
For example, Shadow and Bone, a fantasy series based on the popular Grishaverse book series, proved to
be very popular with our members. Over 55m member households chose to watch this show in its first
28 days and we've renewed it for a second season. Sweet Tooth, based on the beloved DC comic, was
another hit series with 60m member households choosing this title in its first four weeks.
Our expansion into non-fiction series is going well. This past quarter, standout unscripted titles include
season two of dating show Too Hot to Handle and social experiment reality program The Circle (an
estimated 29m and 14m, respectively, chose to watch in the first 28 days) as well as the true crime
docu-series The Sons of Sam (19m). We're building out some of these unscripted titles with local
versions of the same formats. As one example, Too Hot to Handle: Brazil and Too Hot to Handle: Latino
will be launching later in July and September, respectively, to serve our LATAM region.
We're also quickly growing both our live action and animated original film offering, with several
impactful titles in Q2. Zack Snyder's Army of the Dead was a blockbuster as 75m member households
chose to watch this action packed zombie spectacle in its first 28 days of release. As an extension to
Army of the Dead, a prequel, Army of Thieves, will be released in Q4'21 along with a spinoff anime series
later in 2022. Fatherhood, a dramedy starring Kevin Hart, was another hit, drawing an estimated 74m
member households in its first 28 days. And Q2 also featured our biggest Netflix animated film to date
with 53m member households choosing to watch The Mitchells vs. The Machines.
Last week, Netflix series and specials received 129 Emmy nominations. With 24 nominations, The Crown
tied for the most nominated series. Bridgerton with 12 nominations was also nominated for Best Drama
series while The Queen's Gambit received 18 nominations including Best Limited Series. Cobra Kai, Emily
In Paris and the finale season of The Kominsky Method were all nominated for Best Comedy series.
Beyond this acclaim, these are also among our popular series on Netflix.
Our non-English content investments are growing both in scope and impact. Our P&L content expense
for this content category has more than doubled in the past two years. Illustrating how great stories can
come from anywhere and be loved everywhere, part two of Lupin from France was our largest
non-English title in the quarter with 54m member households choosing this title in its first four weeks.
Season four of Elite from Spain drew 37m member households in its first 28 days, while season two of
Who Killed Sara? built on the success of the first season with 34m households choosing the latest
installment of this gripping thriller from Mexico.
As discussed in previous letters, COVID-related production delays in 2020 have led to a lighter first half of
2021 slate that will build through the course of the year. In the first six months of 2021, content
amortization grew only 9% year over year (as compared to 17% in FY20). COVID and its variants make
predicting the future hard, but with productions largely running smoothly so far, we're optimistic in our
ability to deliver a strong second half slate. Through the first half of 2021 we've already spent $8 billion
in cash on content (up 41% yr-over-yr and 1.4x our content amortization) and we expect content
amortization to be around $12 billion for the full year (+12% year over year). Our Q3 slate will include
new seasons of fan favorites La Casa de Papel (aka Money Heist), Sex Education, Virgin River and Never
Have I Ever as well as live action films including Sweet Girl (starring Jason Momoa), Kissing Booth 3, and
Kate (starring Mary Elizabeth Winstead) and the animated feature film Vivo, featuring all-new songs from
We're also in the early stages of further expanding into games, building on our earlier efforts around
interactivity (eg, Black Mirror Bandersnatch) and our Stranger Things games. We view gaming as another
new content category for us, similar to our expansion into original films, animation and unscripted TV.
Games will be included in members' Netflix subscription at no additional cost similar to films and series.
Initially, we'll be primarily focused on games for mobile devices. We're excited as ever about our movies
and TV series offering and we expect a long runway of increasing investment and growth across all of our
existing content categories, but since we are nearly a decade into our push into original programming,
we think the time is right to learn more about how our members value games.