Netflix secures exclusive rights to original TV show, ‘House of Cards’

Known for offering viewers on-demand streaming television programming and movies, Netflix has carved out a money-laden niche for itself. Since its launch in 1998, the company has grown significantly. Once merely offering DVD rentals through the mail, its model expanded to include its current (and very popular) service — online streaming content via your computer, TV and even all three current-generation home gaming consoles.

Despite a recent push by Amazon into the streaming on-demand video market, Netflix is focused on entering a brand new market altogether: original programming.

News broke yesterday about Netflix’s venture bearing fruit. Hollywood insider news site Deadline reported that the online video giant secured the rights to “House of Cards,” a new drama series based off a 90s UK show, starring Kevin Spacey and directed by David Fincher – outbidding companies like HBO and AMC in the process.

The site surmises that the surprising foray into original content may have cost Netflix nearly $100 million, based on typical cost per episode (26 episodes, or two seasons, are promised) and the all-important marketing campaign which tends to make or break brand new shows.

Certainly a huge departure for Netflix, it’s unclear if this effort to diversify will pay off. With an award-winning staff behind the production and Netflix’s heavy coffers covering the bill, it could prove an impressive first step into delivering original content. For a company that built itself providing consumers with the work of others, this seems like a logical next step — if ‘House of Cards’ can compete with the countless other big-name players Netflix is simultaneously offering its viewers, that is. (Via Deadline)