Netflix, which just announced it added nearly 10 million subscribers in the first quarter, will pay $60 million for the three-project deal with Beyoncé, sources tell entertainment trade publication Variety.
The first of the three specials, “Homecoming,” the behind-the-scenes documentary chronicling her 2018 Coachella performance, premiered on April 17.
If confirmed, the streaming giant’s
payout rivals the $40 million and $60 million granted top comedians Chris Rock and Dave Chappelle, respectively, for exclusive programming, though is shy of the $100 million given Shonda Rhimes and the $250 million for Ryan Murphy, both counted among television-concept royalty.
The singer’s rep did not respond to Variety’s requests for comment, the paper said; Netflix declined comment, although a source at the company disputed the financial terms of the deal.
According to Vulture, HBO was also interested in the project after the cable network aired Knowles’s 2016 “Lemonade” film, as well as her 2014 “On the Run Tour” concert special with husband Jay-Z and 2013 documentary “Life Is But a Dream.” But HBO bowed out once Netflix named its higher price, the report said.
The “Irreplaceable” singer and 23-time Grammy winner also dropped a surprise live album early Wednesday morning to coincide with the doc.
Netflix’s previous forays into exclusive music content includes last year’s “Springsteen on Broadway” special, Lady Gaga’s “Gaga: Five Foot Two,” released in 2017, the Quincy Jones bio “Quincy” and the critically lauded series “Remastered.”
Netflix on April 17 reported first-quarter earnings, including the addition of 9.6 million new paying subscribers in the first three months of the year, a record for a single quarter. The streaming-entertainment company reported earnings of $344 million, or 76 cents a share, up from 64 cents a share a year ago. Revenue for the quarter was $4.5 billion, up from $3.7 billion in the same period last year.
The company’s forecast for the second quarter was lighter than expected, however, both in profit and new subscribers. Netflix projected second-quarter earnings of 55 cents a share, which would be down from 85 cents a share a year ago and well lower than analysts’ estimates of 99 cents a share.
The stock has increased 34% in the year to date, as the S&P 500 index
has gained nearly 16% over that stretch.