Netflix plans to release 20 unscripted or reality shows in 2017, according to comments made by chief content officer Ted Sarandos and reported by Variety. “Unscripted television is a very interesting business,” Sarandos said, adding that the company’s focus is on shows which are “more likely to travel internationally.” Netflix’s slate of original programming overall is set to top 1,000 hours next year, doubling the amount in 2016.
Sarandos singled out Ultimate Beastmaster, the Sylvester Stallone-produced athletic competition series, as an example of a show designed to travel; there are localized versions of the show with different hosts from the US, Brazil, South Korea, Mexico, Germany, and Japan. “When Beastmaster hits in Korea, they’ll never have seen anything like it,” Sarandos said.
Another example of the cross-cultural potential in reality shows is Terrace House, the Japanese property that Netflix now co-produces with Fuji TV; anecdotally, it seems like a lot of international viewers are catching on to the show's unusually languid appeal. A new series set in Hawaii called Terrace House: Aloha State is currently airing in Japan and will presumably make its way to the US next year.