Why Do Hollywood’s Heaviest Hitters Hate Netflix?

Netflix’s big win at the Oscars may have put a target on the back of the streaming service. Roma, which was nominated in the Best Picture category and took home the Best Director trophy, has created a stir ever since the February 24th ceremony, and now directors are looking to ensure Netflix stays relegated to the lesser categories.

Steven Spielberg has been outspoken about his desire to keep Netflix from taking home the big trophies. Following the Oscars, he was outspoken about his concernes, claiming that Netflix productions aren’t actual movies, and they should never be nominated for the major Oscar categories. While his thoughts were met with controversy, the famed director is pushing on. He is working with the Academy, to ensure all films nominated for future awards have had theatrical runs. This would leave Netflix entirely out in the cold. While Spielberg is the most recent opponent of the streaming service, he is far from the first, so why do directors hate Netflix so much?

Chris Nolan accuses Netflix of ruining the movie experience

Nolan, famed for his work in Inception, Prestige, and Memento, among other films has been outspoken about his distaste for streaming films. According to GQ, Nolan questions the streaming-only model for failing to try to enter the theatrical arena. Not only does Nolan believe the service is missing out on a big opportunity, but he feels the entire concept of streaming films is ruining the theatrics of it all. The famed director noted that a movie will never feel as life-like or look as good on a laptop screen, and he’s probably right about that.

What Nolan fails to realize is the difficulty in getting a movie produced and distributed on the big screen. GQ notes that he is speaking from the very top echelon of filmmakers. He has made it and frankly can demand whatever he wants. That is just not the case for unknown directors, and Netflix is giving them a chance to shine. Either way, Nolan does not care for the grassroots filmmaking model that Netflix follows.

There is no way to measure success

Directors also hate the fact that Netflix is throwing out all measures of success. In movieland, a film’s success is primarily tied to the number of people who purchase a ticket to see the movie. Directors like Spielberg, Tarantino, and Nolan hang their hats on those figures. After all, they are big names in the industry and their name attached to a project almost guarantees its box office success.

Netflix does not release its figures for the number of streams a film receives. In fact, the streaming giant has been notoriously guarded about any data connected to their service. This fact annoys big-name directors, all of whom have had their careers driven by numbers, according to Phoenix Mag.

Directors don’t think Netflix Originals are movies

The most prominent directors in the game have all passed by Netflix because they don’t consider them actual movies. Spielberg has claimed that once a film has committed to streaming or television screens, that they need to stay there. His biggest qualm appears to be with Netflix’s work appearing at the Oscars, an award show wholly designed for the filmmaking industry. The top Hollywood director sincerely believes Netflix’s work should be relegated to the Emmy awards, since it more closely matches Netflix’s format, according to Variety.

Many directors are also taking issue with the fact that Netflix has the chance to “double-dip” on awards. Whether you consider a Netflix film, a made-for-tv movie or a cinematic masterpiece is entirely subjective, allowing the streaming service to potentially appear at both awards shows. Netflix has done notoriously well at the Emmy Awards, and has begun to make steady strides at the Academy Awards.