Netflix has seemingly no problems with getting behind projects that dont have built-in fanbases, and youd think that a show formed around the internationally known Top Gear guys would have been a great fit in their library, but the service wasnt convinced that the audience is as rabid as public opinion says, and execs dont think they were worth the money that Amazon shelled out (which came out to around $250 million for three 12-episode seasons).
More recently, however, the service also seems to be taking heavy cues from streaming leader Netflix as rumors have centered on Apple moving into original programming.
“We did have past episodes of ‘Top Gear, ‘ so we have a pretty good gauge of what audiences like”, Netflix Chief Product Officer Neil Hunt told Digital Spy.
‘Our buying decisions tend to be somewhat data-driven.
Moving into original content would be a major step for Apple, which makes most of its money from selling hardware.
With Clarkson, Hammond and May having a £160 million budget to make just 36 hour-long episodes, the team’s new motoring show will have £4.4 million to spend per show.
The budget for Top Gear was £500,000 per show, rising to around £1million when presenter costs were added. It’s a tried-and-tested way to attract customers in the TV world, but Apple, Amazon, and other companies investing in exclusivity should know that it can destroy the value of content too.
Hunt continued: “We’re much bigger, so we have bigger cheques to write”.
Earlier this month former Top Gear producer Andy Wilman revealed he would be joining Clarkson, May and Hammond on the show.
The BBC did not renew Clarkson’s lucrative deal after he punched producer Oisin Tymon during a “fracas” in March.
The fees of £1million for Clarkson and £500,000 for his sidekicks were partly paid by BBC Worldwide, which made £150million a year through global sales. Currently, Hulu subscribers pay $7.99 per month to watch the latest episode of their favorite television series like Once Upon A Time, Wayward Pines, and many more.
The challenge for Amazon is that Top Gear’s popularity was built on a very different business model to the one the online retailer will employ.
Culture Secretary John Whittingdale has said a review of the BBC’s royal charter will consider whether it should be “all things to all people” or have a more “precisely targeted” mission.