Netflix has experience filming originals in Africa, but it hasn’t really commissioned originals from Africa. That’s about to change, however. Erik Barmack revealed at a conference this week that Netflix would “definitely” order some shows from Africa starting in 2019.
We don’t know what shows might be coming, but the service was already “looking at opportunities” on the continent. So far, Netflix’s international efforts have been focused on places like Asia, Europe, and Latin America, and it has only recently started to address large demographics in other parts of the world. One example is that Arabic speakers will finally get a native-language production in the form of Jinn. These kinds of expansions will be great for not only making Netflix a truly global service but also to serving countries where there are few streaming options. This will create a lot of growth for the company.
This worldwide push could also change Netflix’s overall demographic. Barmack is predicting that half of the top 10 popular shows will eventually come from outside of the US and that this transition could happen within just “years, not decades.” So it looks like Netflix might not be quite so America-focused as it is now. This should be interesting to watch as it unfolds.