Netflix Bodybags Steven Spielberg For Whining That They Shouldn't Be Allowed To Be Nominated For Oscars - The Future Is Now, Old Man.

Screen Shot 2019-03-04 at 9.01.07 AM

DEADLINENetflix took to Twitter to make an indirect response to Steven Spielberg’s crusade to block Netflix as a future contender during the Oscars.

The streaming giant didn’t name Spielberg directly in its tweet, but considering his views on Netflix films and the Academy Awards, it seems like the statement is associated with the director’s thoughts about their participation as contenders in award season.

Hey Steve:

Here’s Spielberg in March 2018:

Steven Spielberg doesn’t think that Netflix movies deserve a place alongside more traditional movies at the Oscars.

The incredibly successful filmmaker revealed in an interview with ITV News (via IndieWire) that he thinks Netflix movies belong at the Emmys amongst TV movies, not with feature films at the Oscars, even when said Netflix movies follow the rules required to become eligible for Oscars.

“I don’t believe that films that are just given token qualifications, in a couple of theaters for less than a week, should qualify for the Academy Award nominations,” Spielberg said.

…This doesn’t sit well with Spielberg, who notes that it’s much easier to get a movie picked up by Netflix and then put in theaters than getting a movie into a theater through the more traditional route.

“Fewer and fewer filmmakers are going to struggle to raise money, or to compete at Sundance and possibly get one of the specialty labels to release their films theatrically,” Spielberg said.

“And more of them are going to let the [streaming video on-demand] businesses finance their films, maybe with the promise of a slight, one-week theatrical window to qualify for awards. But, in fact, once you commit to a television format, you’re a TV movie.” [Mashable]

Now, in 2019, even after the movie he supported won Best Picture, he’s still focused on the Netflix dilemma – so focused that he’s actively campaigning for changes.

Steven Spielberg isn’t basking in the glow of Best Picture Oscar-winner “Green Book,” which he supported in this year’s contentious Oscar race. His Academy Award attention is now devoted to ensuring that the race never sees another “Roma” — a Netflix film backed by massive sums, that didn’t play by the same rules as its analog-studio competitors.

As far as he’s concerned, as it currently stands Netflix should only compete for awards in the Emmy arena; as the Academy Governor representing the directors branch, Spielberg is eager to support rule changes when it convenes for its annual post-Oscar meeting.

“Steven feels strongly about the difference between the streaming and theatrical situation,” said an Amblin spokesperson. “He’ll be happy if the others will join [his campaign] when that comes up [at the Academy Board of Governors meeting]. He will see what happens.” [IndieWire]

Spielberg is a “governor” of the Academy and has been proposing eligibility changes that would make Netflix “movies” a part of the Emmys, not the Oscars, because they don’t “play by the rules.”

Netflix woke up this weekend feeling extra frisky, so they fired out a response:


Listen I LOVE going to the movies.  I am absolutely in the old school there.  For me nothing will ever replace the actual movie-theater experience.  My TV is super expensive, my surround sound is dope, my couch is comfy as hell, I got snacks and sodas and a bar cart literally spilling out of the kitchen, nobody is talking or texting or sneezing or coughing.  But going to the actual movies is still one of my favorite things to do.

Having said that, here’s what a trip to the movies is like if I wanted to see Green Book in Chelsea tonight at 7:15:

-12 minute walk in snow with 50-60% chance of slipping on black ice and 85-93% chance of stepping in unseen curbside puddle.

-$16.50 ticket (plus convenience fee, let’s be honest, I’m not waiting on any lines.)

-$26.50 for a large popcorn, large soda and a candy (that’s just because it’s DietSzn, one candy is a strettchhhh.)

-Seat next to one couple making out the whole movie on one side and man with very bad contagious cold on the other.

-Roughly 4-7 minutes of movie missed for pee breaks (small bladder.)

And that’s in New York, where there’s a movie theater in walking distance of virtually anywhere you live, or if you want to go to one of the fancy high-tech theaters, it’s a 10-15 car ride or train ride max.  The town I grew up in took 8 years to get a movie theater approved because the town was concerned it would cause too much traffic, and then another 2 years to get the colors of the sign approved by the historical board.  For that decade it was a 30-35 minute drive in traffic to see a movie.

Also that’s just for me.  Double that for my date (which 99% of the time is Feitelberg if we’re being honest).

So yeah – you don’t have to be a professional Social Justice Warrior to realize it’s REALLY fucking hard and expensive for less fortunate people and large families to catch a lot of the movies that hit Steven Spielberg’s standards.  A $13.99 a month subscription makes a lot more financial sense for people who aren’t quite racking in the paychecks of big Steve.

Screen Shot 2019-03-04 at 12.05.08 PM

Spielberg’s argument in a nutshell: Netflix spends a shit ton of money (their Roma Oscar-spend was estimated at $50 mil while Green Book was $5), they crush foreign-language distributors, they don’t report box office, they only spend 3 weeks exclusively in theaters, and they’re available in almost 200 countries 24/7/365.

So basically major Hollywood studios are “the little guy” now. It’s just not fair that “fewer and fewer filmmakers are going to struggle to raise money, or to compete at Sundance and possibly get one of the specialty labels to release their films theatrically.”


Meanwhile the movie he is upset with for getting so much attention is from a Mexican immigrant, based on his upbringing in Mexico City, centers on an indigenous Mexican domestic worker, played by the first woman of indigenous descent to be nominated for best actress, that “ignited a national conversation about racial and class discrimination” and “fueled advocacy around workers’ rights.”

How many families of 6 are spending the money mentioned above to trek to the theater to watch a black and white movie with subtitles about a Mexican domestic worker?

Screen Shot 2019-03-04 at 11.58.11 AM

I guess I fail to see how it’s a bad thing for Netflix to spend the money it has pushing movies that people wouldn’t normally be motivated to see because it’s outside of their general interest or comfort zones.

It’s not like Netflix paid the Academy to vote for Roma – they made the movie available, people watched it, decided it was good, and nominated it.

But it didn’t grind it out at a film festival in Park City Utah so it’s bad.