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Report: Netflix to invest in original content

Red Netflix envelopes sit in a bin of mail at the U.S. Post Office.

STEVE CHIOTAKIS: Today, Netflix is branching out -- and for the first time is producing and distributing its own show. And that has Hollywood a little concerned.

Marketplace's Mitchell Hartman explains.


MITCHELL HARTMAN: According to entertainment blog Deadline Hollywood, Netflix is edging out cable networks HBO and AMC to produce a new 26-episode political drama for TV called 'House of Cards.' And they're going for a blockbuster -- with Kevin Spacey and director David Fincher of "The Social Network." It'll be the first time Netflix streams its own show to its own subscribers.

PHILLIP SWANN: It's not surprising at all.

Phillip Swann of TVPredictions.com says Netflix is sitting pretty with its 20 million subscribers. But it's also got a lot of competition coming up from behind -- Amazon, Facebook, the telephone and cable companies.

SWANN: So Netflix sees the future and they go, "You know, we're going to have a tough time keeping those 20 million subscribers unless we provide them with content they can't get anywhere else."

The deal's likely to be expensive -- $5 million an episode plus tens of millions for promotion.

I'm Mitchell Hartman for Marketplace.

About the author

Mitchell Hartman is the senior reporter for Marketplace’s Entrepreneurship Desk and also covers employment.
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