Netflix had always planned a big outlay for Baz Luhrmann's The Get Down.
The project was the streaming service's most ambitious project to date as it attempted to capture the rise of hip hop in 1970s New York. A production budget of $120m had been granted for the twelve episode series which is being released in two parts.
The first set of six arrived in August, however it appears that it hasn't been the hit with audiences that Netflix hoped. Netflix of course have never released their official viewing figure. However according to Deadline, Symphony Advanced Media’s chart for viewings among 18- to 49-year-olds ranks The Get Down at number 14 amongst Netflix's originals. To put that in comparison, Stranger Things, which was made for a fraction of the cost, came in at number 3.
Filming on the second half of the series has yet to completely wrap and the report from Deadline reveals that the production budget has skyrocketed to a rumoured $16m an episode. Visual effects, music rights and production design are thought to be biggest drain on funds.
Despite the soaring costs, Netflix's Chief Content Officer Ted Sarandos didn't seem too worried when he recently addressed a question about the show's expense versus viewership.
“Yes, it’s an expensive piece of television. Mostly because it’s very large-scale, cinematic. The reason why Baz Luhrmann’s films work around the world is that kind of attractiveness. We’re still seeing how it’s going to unfold for the first season."
"We’re very excited about how the show has been performing, particularly in a quarter where we had four shows that turned out to be kind of big event programs for us.”