If you're a fan of scripted Netflix shows like Jessica Jones and Master of None, rejoice: the streaming service is doubling down on its commitment to original programming. Chief content officer Ted Sarandos announced that Netflix will reach a total of 31 scripted shows over the course of 2016 in a speech at the UBS Media Conference this morning. That's almost double the 16 such shows the service aired in 2015. Sarandos also shared that Netflix is working on 10 new feature films, 30 kids' shows, 12 documentaries, and 10 stand-up specials. "It's not just a lot of volume," said Sarandos. "This is quality stuff."
Netflix's push for greater original content has been slowly accelerating for years, but the company's expansion is still staggering when laid out in simple terms. The number of scripted Netflix series was stuck in the single digits until earlier this year despite the success of shows like House of Cards and Orange Is the New Black. The service's rapid growth has created a sort of vicious cycle: expanding into original content means other networks are more hesitant to license their own shows to Netflix, which means Netflix has to make even more of its own original content to remain competitive.
Netflix's global expansion helps it release even more original content
Sarandos also spoke about Netflix's ongoing international expansion, an effort that included moves into Italy, Spain, Japan, Australia, New Zealand, and Portugal this year. "It has not been an easy road," said Sarandos. "We're aspiring to take Netflix fully global... we're alone in this space of buying global rights." International expansion may present the company with some difficult challenges, but it also allows it to turn its international presence into even more original programming. That process began this year with the premiere of shows like Narcos and Club de Cuervos, and it's set to continue next year with the planned premiere of scripted shows like Marseille, 3%, and Suburra.