Netflix unveils 2024 slate led by sci-fi from 'Thrones' creators

By AFP   February 1, 2024 | 08:25 am PT
Netflix is betting on its ambitious new sci-fi series from the creators of "Game of Thrones" to help extend its streaming dominance in 2024, as the company unveiled a sprawling TV and film lineup Thursday.

"3 Body Problem," out March 21, is adapted from a bestselling Chinese trilogy of novels which takes place in an alternate version of modern reality where humanity has made contact with an alien civilization.

The series will be "part thriller, part sci-fi," chief content officer Bela Bajaria told journalists at a Los Angeles press conference.

It is at least partly set in modern-day London. One scene showed a British police inspector (played by Benedict Wong) investigating a strange and grisly apparent suicide.

"It's a big swing. A huge, cinematic bet," said Bajaria.

The series from "Thrones" pair David Benioff and D.B. Weiss features prominently in a Netflix 2024 preview reel published online Thursday, and was the first content shown to reporters at this week's presentation.

Other shows due later this year include the eagerly awaited second season of "Squid Game" -- the dystopian Korean horror tale about a fictional, deadly game show which remains by far the most-watched Netflix TV series ever.

It will follow returning hero Gi-hun as he abandons his plans to go to the United States and "starts a chase with a motive."

Also among a notably international lineup were a Spanish-language, Colombian-made TV series based on Gabriel Garcia Marquez's beloved novel "One Hundred Years of Solitude," and a six-part drama about the life of Brazilian racing great Ayrton Senna.

On the movie side, Eddie Murphy returns this summer in a new "Beverly Hills Cop" sequel.

Netflix last week announced it had added 13 million subscribers in the final three months of last year.

It finished 2023 with slightly more than 260 million subscribers worldwide -- comfortably ahead of any rivals.

"Many of you in this room have said to me that with so many titles across so many genres, that it's hard to understand our strategy," said Bajaria.

But roughly two people per account means an audience of "more than half a billion people," she said.

"No entertainment company has tried to program with this ambition -- for this many tastes, cultures and languages. Ever."

Netflix began life in 1998 as a U.S.-only DVD-by-mail rental company, taking on the then-mighty movie rental giant Blockbuster, before dipping into video-on-demand as a perk for its customers -- a shift that enabled the company to expand globally.

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