Netflix’s Chief Content Officer Ted Sarandos told an audience at the Paley Center for Media in New York on Tuesday that upcoming projects involving Barack and Michelle Obama will not have a “political slant.”
“This is not The Obama Network,” Sarandos was quoted as saying on Tuesday. “There’s no political slant to the programming.”
Last week, Netflix announced that the signing a “multi-year agreement” with the former President and First Lady to “produce films and series for Netflix.” The deal was reportedly brokered by Sarandos, who served Obama as a presidential campaign fundraiser as well as an official in his administration.
Sarandos went on to bat away accusations Tuesday that the video streaming giant is biased to the left after the company recently appointed Obama’s former National Security Advisor Susan Rice to its board, but admitted that the industry itself was left-leaning.
“Umm, wait for the programming,” he told journalist Ken Auletta, adding that “it’s hard to argue that there’s not a left lean to the creative community.”
Sarandos insisted that all original Netflix content does not reflect the views of the company or its CEO Reed Hasting, but instead it represents “an aggregation of all those storytellers.”
Obama has described his project as a chance to tell the “stories” of ordinary Americans, as well as helping to “train the next generation of leaders” and help ease America’s political polarization.
“We want to tell stories. This [Netflix deal] becomes a platform,” he said last week. “We are interested in lifting people up and identifying people doing amazing work. We did this in the White House.”
According to a recent report, Netflix is now more valuable than both Disney and Comcast as people around the world continue to cut the cord on traditional programming and move online.
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