Netflix’s first foray into theatrical releases kicked off the other week with “Beasts of No Nation,” Cary Fukunaga’s child soldier drama with Idris Elba. The film was released simultaneously around the world on the streaming service, along with a limited theatrical run in the United States.
That theatrical run has been a bit of a disaster, not uncommon at the moment as numerous prestige films have been under-performing including much higher profile titles like “Steve Jobs,” but the big question is really how well the film did on the service?
Netflix has always held its ratings and viewer numbers close to its chest, never letting out details or metric data unless absolutely necessary. In a new interview with Deadline today though, the company’s chief creative officer Ted Sarandos was willing to talk some numbers:
“It is worth sharing that this movie, in North America alone, has over 3 million views already. Which I think is a bigger audience than any specialty film could ever hope for in its first two weeks of release, and maybe for its entire run. And we’re just starting.
We are just thrilled with the total audience reach of this film, not just in North America but the world. In the first week of release, Beasts Of No Nation was the most watched movie on Netflix, in every country we operate in. Even Japan, and I’m only calling out Japan because most specialty films don’t do very much of their box office outside the U.S. at all, let alone in Japan. Studios have trouble opening those movies in Japan.
This was No. 1 in really diverse places in the world – Japan, Brazil, Mexico, places where these films typically never even open. It’s been incredibly gratifying to see these audiences respond to this film.”
“Beasts of No Nation” is now available on Netflix.