Netflix is in “advanced talks,” according to Variety, to join the Motion Pictures Association of America—a trade organization (aka lobby group) currently representing the six major Hollywood studios. If Netflix’s first ever Best Picture nomination at the Oscars wasn’t a sign that Netflix is a major feature film player, then this certainly seals the deal.
For those who don’t know, the MPAA is the organization that lobbies for copyright protection, anti-piracy protection and tax credits for productions.They’re often known as the organization responsible for movie ratings. The MPAA describes its function as “advocating for policies that recognize the power of our stories, reward creators, and allow us to produce, distribute, and protect the creative content audiences love.”
Right now, the MPAA has six major studios as members: Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures; Paramount Pictures Corporation; Sony Pictures Entertainment, Inc.; Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation; Universal City Studios LLC; and Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. However, when the Fox/Disney merger is complete, it will lose one of its members. As each member pays annual dues between $15 million to $20 million per year, that’s a big deal for the MPAA.
Enter Netflix, which has increasingly proved itself as a major player in the U.S. feature film industry, despite being a streaming video provider. Notably, Netflix recently left the Internet Association, the trade agency that represents tech giants like Google, Amazon, and Facebook. In other words, Netflix is looking to rebrand itself as a more traditional media content creator rather than a tech company and, increasingly, Hollywood is being forced to take that rebrand seriously.
More news as we hear it.