The perceived battle between Disney and Netflix just took another turn as it was announced that ABC’s biggest producer Shonda Rhimes is bringing her Shondaland production company to Netflix under a multi-year deal to produce new series and other projects. Longtime producing partner, Betsy Beers makes the move to Netflix as well.
This comes less than a week after the news that Disney will not be renewing their deal for Disney and Pixar movies and will instead be launching their own streaming service. Negotiations between Disney and Netflix for Marvel and Star Wars films are ongoing.
The move further unites Rhimes with Netflix. While Shondaland’s award-winning series such as Grey’s Anatomy, Scandal and How to Get Away with Murder air in the U.S. on ABC — and will continue to — How to Get Away with Murder streams everywhere else in the world on Netflix, with Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal available on Netflix in many regions as well.
“Shonda Rhimes is one of the greatest storytellers in the history of television,” said Ted Sarandos, Chief Content Officer, Netflix. “Her work is gripping, inventive, pulse-pounding, heart-stopping, taboo-breaking television at its best. I’ve gotten the chance to know Shonda and she’s a true Netflixer at heart — she loves TV and films, she cares passionately about her work, and she delivers for her audience. We’re so excited to welcome her to Netflix.”
“Shondaland’s move to Netflix is the result of a shared plan Ted Sarandos and I built based on my vision for myself as a storyteller and for the evolution of my company,” said Rhimes. “Ted provides a clear, fearless space for creators at Netflix. He understood what I was looking for — the opportunity to build a vibrant new storytelling home for writers with the unique creative freedom and instantaneous global reach provided by Netflix’s singular sense of innovation. The future of Shondaland at Netflix has limitless possibilities. Our current shows will continue to thrive on ABC and Shondaland will be there every step of the way. I could not have asked for a better home to begin my career. I continue to be grateful to work with so many talented people – especially our studio gladiator Patrick Moran and our most powerful and brilliant champion Channing Dungey. Starting today, we are thrilled to begin creating new Shondaland stories with Netflix. Everyone at Shondaland is honored to expand both our audience and our creative identity with Ted and the entire team at Netflix.”
Said Beers, “I am a huge fan of the talented team and amazing programming at Netflix. The ability to create content for our new partners is an exciting challenge. I am grateful to everyone at ABC for their continued support and I look forward to beginning this next chapter at Netflix.”
“We’re so proud of the work we’ve done with Shonda and Betsy throughout our long and productive relationship, said Patrick Moran, president ABC Studios. From the worldwide success of Grey’s Anatomy to today, with five series (‘Grey’s Anatomy,’ ‘Scandal,’ ‘How To Get Away With Murder,’ ‘For the People,’ and the ‘Grey’s’ spinoff), a pilot from Allan Heinberg and a number of projects in development, we will continue to shepherd that success together. The Shondaland imprint will always be an important part of ABC Studios and we wish them all the best in this new endeavor.”
“Shonda, Betsy and I started working together with the first episode of Grey’s Anatomy and those early days will forever remain one of the highlights of my professional life,” said Channing Dungey, president, ABC Entertainment. “We are happy to continue working with Shonda and her team at Shondaland on Grey’s, Scandal, How to Get Away with Murder, and the upcoming For the People and Grey’s spinoff. I’m proud to have given a home to what have become some of the most celebrated and talked about shows on television. With the launch of a new season upon us, fans can rest assured that TGIT remains intact and will be as buzzed about as ever.”