You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Netflix Forges Multi-Picture Pact With Italy’s Mediaset

Netflix and Mediaset are forging an alliance in Italy under which they will jointly produce seven feature films, a move that marks the U.S. streaming giant’s biggest Italian content deal to date.

Netflix CEO Reed Hastings will officially unveil the movie titles and specifics of the multi-year pact at an event in Rome next Tuesday. The deal was first reported by Bloomberg and confirmed to Variety by a source. There was no immediate comment from Netflix or from Mediaset, which was founded and is controlled by the family of former Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi.

Mediaset Managing Director Piersilvio Berlusconi had said in July that he was in advanced talks regarding co-producing content with Netflix. As an example of the two companies’ rapport, he cited their unusual collaboration on promoting the third season of “Stranger Things” on Mediaset’s youth-oriented Italia Uno channel. Although the series is available exclusively on the streamer, Mediaset, which is Italy’s top commercial broadcaster, set the stage for the “Stranger Things” Season 3 bow by airing 1980s movies that the show referenced in the show, such as “The Breakfast Club,” “Gremlins,” and “The Goonies.”

Netflix’s deal with Mediaset in Italy comes as the generalist broadcaster is expanding its scope by moving its base to Amsterdam – where Netflix also has its European headquarters – to set up a pan-European media company called MediaForEurope. The new Mediaset outfit would operate in Italy, Spain and Germany in an effort to gain more scale to compete with big global players, like Netflix, that are disrupting the market.

Popular on Variety

Since Netflix entered the Italian market in 2015, it’s steadily gained ground in terms of subscriptions, which are expected to reach 2 million by the end of 2019, according to independent analyst Ovum. The streaming giant, which has been working with ITV-owned Cattleya on crime show “Suburra” and with several smaller players, recently announced a €200 million ($222 million) investment in Italian original productions over the next three years.

However, an Italian news report Thursday said that prosecutors in Milan have opened an investigation into alleged tax evasion by the streaming giant.

More Digital

  • Editorial Use onlyMandatory Credit: Photo by

    YouTube Institutes Stricter Harassment Policy, Won't Exempt Public Figures

    YouTube has promised to ramp up its fight against hate and harassment: The Google-owned video service announced changes to its harassment policy Wednesday, which include a ban on implicit threats of violence and insults that target someone for their race, gender expression or sexual orientation. “We will not tolerate harassment,” said YouTube’s global head of [...]

  • Janko Roettgers, Jeremy Legg, Vicky Colf,

    Listen: Inside HBO Max's Streaming Strategy With WarnerMedia CTO Jeremy Legg

    HBO Max may not be streaming to consumers until May 2020, but for Jeremy Legg, the hard work has already begun. The WarnerMedia chief technology officer is deep into the development of parent company AT&T’s highest priority next year. While rival efforts from Disney and Apple are already in market, he envisions launching a product [...]

  • quibi

    Quibi Orders Gaming Thriller ‘Curs_r’ From Anton, Stigma, Ridley Scott

    Quibi has greenlit the development of “Curs_r,” a gaming drama series executive produced by Anton, Stigma Films and Ridley Scott. The series will be directed by Toby Meakins (“Bite Size Horror”) and is written by Simon Allen (“The Watch,” “Das Boot,” “The Musketeers”). Matthew James Wilkinson (“Yesterday,” “Amulet”) is producing. The series centers on the [...]

  • Susie Banikarim - Vice News

    Vice News Hires Susie Banikarim to Head Newsgathering Operations (EXCLUSIVE)

    Susie Banikarim, a journalist with nearly two decades of experience in digital and TV news, is joining Vice News as one of its top editorial execs. Vice Media Group tapped Banikarim as executive VP and global head of newsgathering for Vice News, a newly created role. She will be based out of Vice’s Brooklyn headquarters [...]

  • Daniel Ek Spotify

    New Netflix Original to Tell the Story of Spotify's Creation

    In a case of one disrupter telling the story of another, Netflix has boarded a series about the creation of Spotify, the Swedish startup that’s become one of the world’s leading music services. The as-yet-untitled limited series, to be directed by Per-Olav Sørensen (“Quicksand”), is inspired by the book “Spotify Untold” by Sven Carlsson and [...]

  • Jamie Gutfreund Greg Coleman - Tubular

    Tubular Labs Adds Jamie Gutfreund, Greg Coleman to Board

    Video-measurement firm Tubular Labs announced two additions to its board of directors: Jamie Gutfreund, ex-chief strategy officer of CAA and formerly Hasbro’s chief consumer experience officer, and Greg Coleman, former president of BuzzFeed. Gutfreund and Coleman are not personally investing in Tubular Labs but will receive stock options in the privately held company. They join [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content