Netflix v cinema?

Dame Helen Mirren: "F--k Netflix!"

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Does Netflix threaten cinemas?

By Daniel J. McLaughlin

Millions of people watch the film and television programmes on offer on Netflix every day - but not everyone is a fan.

Helen Mirren was blunt with his criticism of the streaming service, saying: "F--k Netflix!".

However, some argue that Mirren and her fellow Hollywood luminaries should not dismiss Netflix, and actually learn from it.

The Claim

Dame Helen Mirren gave a four-lettered critique of Netflix when appearing at an event for cinema exhibitors in Las Vegas, the BBC reports.

The actress was met with cheers and applause when she told the audience: "I love Netflix, but f--k Netflix!"

She told the annual CinemaCon event that here was "nothing like sitting in the cinema".

Mirren has made previous comments about the streaming service, arguing it was "devastating" for people who want to make films for the big screen.

She said: "It's devastating for people like my husband, film directors, because they want their movies to be watched in a cinema with a group of people.

"An audience, a movie, and you're all in it together. You're frightened, you laugh, you cry all together. So it's a communal thing. And that's beginning to disappear."

The Counterclaim

However, the Daily Telegraph's Ed Power tells Hollywood to "stop attacking Netflix and try living in the real world". He wonders when was the last time that Mirren visited her local multiplex.

He asks what gives Mirren and her fellow Hollywood luminaries the "moral authority to preach about the supposed inviolability of cinema going", as well as telling us we're wrong to watch these films at home, or on our phones.

Power says that Netflix's ambition is to "make cinema cheaply and easily available to its millions of subscribers". He argues: "Instead of telling Netflix to "f--k" off perhaps Hollywood would be better off considering why they've been so successful."

He also notes that a trip to the cinema, with a popcorn and fizzy drink combo, is likely to cost more than a monthly Netflix subscription.

He explains: "To take a family of four to see Dumbo on Imax in London, for instance, costs £65 – the equivalent of a six-month Netflix subscription to the rest of us."

The Facts

Netflix has around 139 million subscribers around the world, and it is expected to reach over 150 million soon.

According to CNN, the streaming service added nearly nine million new subscribers during the final three months of 2018 - beating its own expectations of 7.6 million new subscribers.

The streaming service has been producing original content since 2013 when it released the US version of 'House of Cards'. Since then, it has produced popular programmes, such as 'Stranger Things', 'Orange Is the New Black', and 'The Crown'.

Netflix spent $12 billion on original content last year - and this budget is expected to rise to £15 billion in 2019.

The price of a Netflix subscription in the UK ranges from £5.99 for a basic subscription to £9.99 for a premium subscription - the latter gives you access to 4K streaming and the use of four screens at once.

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