Streaming giant Netflix has come a long way from the days where it sent customers DVDs in the mail. These days, it’s one of the largest entertainment companies in the world, and the force behind the wildly popular Drive To Survive series which chronicles the world of Formula 1 each season. Historically, the company has avoided the world of live broadcasting sports, but that could change in future, based on statements by CEO Reed Hastings in a discussion with German outlet Der Spiegel.
Speaking on the issue of Formula 1, Hastings noted that “A few years back, the Formula 1 rights were sold. At that time we were not among the bidders, but today we would definitely consider that.” However, it would mark a significant change in tack for the streaming company. “At Netflix, we do entertainment and not journalism,” says Hastings, adding “That would have to be up to certain standards. We keep our hands off live sports. With that kind of broadcast, we have no control over the source.”
Given the success of Netflix’s Drive To Survive, it would be a natural progression for the company to look at doing more in the world of Formula 1. The series, which follows along with teams at races throughout the year, tells the story of each Formula 1 season in a compelling, documentary-style format.
Through its tight editing and narrative style, it’s made Formula 1 far more accessible and is credited with bringing an influx of new fans to the sport, especially in the U.S. where live races are often broadcast in the overnight or early-morning hours. DTS is sometimes criticized for its editorial decisions and misrepresentations, while also lauded for the unique look it brings to a sport otherwise only seen through the lens of the competitive on-track sessions. Season 4 will cover the 2021 season, and is planned to drop in early 2022.