Netflix is taking a swing at reside sports activities.
The streamer, which has mounted a couple of reside occasions up to now yr, has set its first reside sports activities occasion — one which additionally reinforces the corporate model. Netflix will stage a nine-hole golf match, which it’s calling the Netflix Cup, and can characteristic athletes acquainted to viewers of two of the streamer’s docuseries, Method 1: Drive to Survive and Full Swing.
Method 1 drivers Alex Albon, Pierre Gasly, Lando Norris and Carlos Sainz can be paired with PGA Tour golfers Rickie Fowler, Max Homa, Collin Morikawa and Justin Thomas for the match, which is ready for Nov. 14 on the Wynn Golf Membership in Las Vegas. The placement and timing aren’t incidental: The match will kick off the occasions main as much as F1’s inaugural Las Vegas Grand Prix on Nov. 18.
“We like to see how our sports activities sequence have introduced elevated fandom to sports activities leagues and competitions everywhere in the world,” mentioned Gabe Spitzer, vp nonfiction sports activities at Netflix. “The Netflix Cup will take that vitality to the following degree with world stars from two fashionable hits competing in our first-ever reside sports activities occasion.”
With the occasion, Netflix will be a part of quite a lot of different SVOD providers — together with NBCUniversal’s Peacock, Apple TV+, Paramount+ and WBD’s Max — in providing reside sports activities to its subscribers. The Netflix Cup will leverage the streamer’s relationship with Method 1 and the PGA however doesn’t contain any costly rights packages, which the corporate has repeatedly mentioned will not be a enterprise it’s taken with for the time being.
“We actually suppose that we are able to have a extremely sturdy providing for sports activities followers on Netflix with out having to be a part of the issue of the financial mannequin of reside sports activities licensing,” co-CEO Ted Sarandos mentioned throughout the firm’s second quarter earnings name in July. “We’re tremendous excited concerning the success of our sports-adjacent programming.”
Netflix has tried its hand at two reside occasions in 2023, with various levels of success. Chris Rock’s stand-up particular Selective Outrage went off fairly easily in March, however a reunion for season 4 Love Is Blind in April was a multitude, with technical glitches delaying the beginning by greater than an hour — by which period it was now not reside.
The PGA Tour and Method 1 have sanctioned the Netflix Cup, which is able to characteristic 4 two-man groups (one driver and one golfer) competing over eight holes. The 2 main groups will then face off on the ninth gap to find out the winner.
Excel Sports activities Administration (which represents Morikawa and Thomas, together with Tiger Woods and quite a lot of different high golfers) is producing the match with BZ Leisure and Connor Schell and David Chamberlin’s Full Day Productions, which has produced the ESPY Awards, Oscars purple carpet exhibits and ESPN’s Monday Night time Soccer “Manningcast.”