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Video: Making the Case for HDR at Netflix

Learn more about OTT, 4K, and HDR at Streaming Media's next event.

Read the complete transcript of this clip:

Chris Fetner: When you pitch 4K and HDR to creative folks that are doing projects on behalf of Netflix, how do those conversations go, what are their concerns?

Justin Holt: I would say that it's been an education. You know, 4K, HDR, Atmos, all those three roads to technology have been an education for everybody.

The biggest pitch is, everybody's concerned about time, they're concerned about budget. I think the more people do it, the more we push it, the cheaper it'll get, the faster it'll get. Right now, I liken HDR to the Best Buy test and that's how I pitch it to creatives, being like, "Just look at these two side by side." Once you see them side by side, I really don't know of anybody who's looked at it so far is that, everyone like, "Oh, I really like that SDR better," you know?

Nobody has ever said that to me yet, and I don't anticipate that to be the case.

Once they see the creative vision, what they have, and they realize that we're going to work with the vendors, we're going to work with the team to reduce the overall cost, they see the uptick in creative, and they look at the cost of that, and they're like, "This is a no-brainer."

Chris Fetner: So it's worth the investment?

Justin Holt: Absolutely. It's been worth the investment on a wide variety of shows we've had. I mean, Chef's Table's been a great example of that. I think food looks fantastic in HDR, and if you haven't seen it, watch it, and see if you're not hungry afterward.

Chris Fetner: Right! You might reach for it, right?

Justin Holt: Yeah.

Emanuel Billeter: I want to second that. It really is so much more immersive, especially when you see them side by side, how immersive and how three-dimensional almost that image looks in HDR.

Zac Tucker: We're very artist driven, and so when the artists demand it, that's where we go. I would not say we've been terribly successful at being able to charge for it. That's just not been super-feasible. But because we spend a lot of time at that edge, the artists, the cinematographers, the producers want to be there. Because they know we're playing with it all the time, and the reason they're in the business is to push the envelope creatively all the time. And so we're a playground where they want to come. We invest in the kit so that we can do it.

I would not say we have a ton of success with the financers and the producers saying, "Okay." We just had to invest in significant more technology and being able to charge much more for it. Look, there's an extra pass sometimes, so we'll do a little extra if there's an HDR pass. But I wouldn't say it's been a financial windfall.

Chris Fetner: Not a premium as a service.

Zac Tucker: But if you don't do it, then you're not a premium spot.

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