For the upcoming generation of cord-cutting TV lovers, Netflix is an absolute must. The company was founded back in 1998 but did not become the entertainment behemoth it is today until 2010. With its streaming catalog and original productions, Netflix stands as one of the industry’s most competitive contenders for online entertainment. When it comes to anime, Netflix has been slowly growing its share of backlog series and funding a few of its own, but it looks like that was just the beginning.
Now, it is looking like Netflix might just become the next big thing for anime lovers worldwide.
Not long ago, the company indicated its interest in growing its anime presence by releasing a very surprising job posting. The company is looking to hire a director for its anime division who will specialize in original, international content.
“Netflix is recruiting for a Director in our International Originals group to be based either in Beverly Hills, CA, or in Tokyo, Japan. The Director will be a key member of the team, responsible for identifying and developing original anime content,” the site reads. “The Director will be responsible for developing local anime television shows from companies and independent producers for digital streaming in all Netflix territories globally”
Of course, anime fans were taken back when the posting came to their attention. Netflix has dabbled with original content thanks to series like Little Witch Academia and Seven Deadly Sins, but the job posting indicates that Netflix is looking to create an expanded original catalog. The director will be in-charge of “evaluating [and] develop[ing]…high quality anime content that will engage” anime fans.
While there is no confirmed word from Netflix about their future anime content, fans are taking this job posting as a sign of good things to come. In the past few years, the medium has had a resurgence in popularity after a mild slump. Shows like Dragon Ball Super and Attack on Titan brought fans back to anime whilst bringing in newcomers to boot. Given Netflix’s global presence, the site could very easy become the go-to site for anime fans wanting to watch licensed shows - but it is the original content that has fans curious.
If Netflix were to begin developing anime series in full-force, it would be the first U.S. site to bankroll a line-up of such original content. While Funimation and Crunchyroll license anime series from Japan to stream abroad, the companies do not finance the project or even pitch them to foreign studios. They take what they get, but Netflix could change the game if they were the ones to make orders and define trends in anime.
Right now, fans are clamoring over which forgotten anime franchises Netflix could take over. Names like Black Bullet and Spice & Wolf continue to be thrown about, but licensing issues could ultimately keep Netflix from touching those pre-existing anime series. It seems more likely that the company will make its full-on entrance into anime by adapting a manga that’s never been animated. So, naturally, fans are turning an eye to series like Hakomari.
So, what do you think? Would you be excited to see Netflix bring anime and lift it up to mainstream audiences in the U.S, or would you rather they site keep out of the industry? Let us know what you think in the comments below!