Netflix’s film chief to depart

Netflix's film chief to depart

Scott Stuber, who brought Oscar-winning filmmakers like Martin Scorsese, Spike Lee, Jane Campion and Alfonso Cuaron to Netflix and in doing so helped bring the entertainment industry into the streaming age, is leaving as the service’s president of movies, according to the company. Said Monday.

News of Mr. Stuber’s departure came on the eve of the Oscar nominations. During his tenure, which began in 2017, Netflix has had eight films nominated for Best Picture, though victory in that category has proven elusive.

“Scott has helped lead a new paradigm of creating, distributing and watching movies,” Netflix co-chief executive Ted Sarandos said in a statement. “He attracted incredible creative talent to Netflix, helping us become a premiere film studio.”

While Mr. Stuber’s films helped grow Netflix’s business substantially, he often clashed with Mr. Sarandos over strategy. Mr. Stuber often tried to appease the filmmakers by insisting on a wider theatrical release than Mr. Sarandos desired.

Still, Netflix received the most Oscar nominations of any studio in 2020, 2021, and 2022. In addition to such critical hits as Mr. Scorsese’s “The Irishman,” Ms. Campion’s “The Power of the Dog” and Mr. Cuaron’s “Roma.” Mr. Stuber’s tenure produced such popular hits as “Red Notice,” “Bird Box” and “Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery.”

He bet big on filmmakers he wanted to lure to the studio, spending $450 million to acquire two “Knives Out” sequels from Rian Johnson and $160 million for Zack Snyder’s latest release, “Rebel Moon.” Spent more. Greta Gerwig, who directed and co-wrote the blockbuster “Barbie,” is also working with Netflix on a two-film adaptation based on the “Chronicles of Narnia” book series.

“Maestro,” a biopic of composer Leonard Bernstein written, directed and starring Bradley Cooper, is one of the Netflix movies that is expected to get multiple Oscar nominations this year. (Netflix will also announce its fourth-quarter earnings on Tuesday.)

Netflix was sometimes criticized for prioritizing quantity over quality in its film strategy, which Mr. Stuber acknowledged.

“I think one of the fair criticisms is that we make too much and not make enough is also great,” he said in an interview in 2021. ,

In a statement on Monday, Mr. Stuber thanked Mr. Sarandos and Reed Hastings, Netflix’s co-founder and executive chairman, for “the amazing opportunity to join Netflix and create a new home for original films.”

“I’m proud of what we accomplished,” he said, “and I’m deeply grateful to all the filmmakers and talent who trusted us to help tell their stories.”

Mr. Stuber is set to leave in March and start his own media company. Bella Bajaria, Netflix’s chief content officer, will take over from Mr. Stuber upon his departure. Last year, she essentially became Mr. Stuber’s boss, creating a layer of management between him and Mr. Sarandos.

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