The long-anticipated House of Cards–a TV-quality political thriller starring Kevin Spacey–recently debuted exclusively on Netflix to much hubbub. The premium distribution service, however, isn’t waiting for viewer feedback; it continues to snatch up original properties left and right. The latest star to align with Netflix is actress/rapper/comedienne Queen Latifah, whose Flavor Unit Entertainment will distribute exclusively on Netflix starting in 2013.
Flavor Unit is named after the DJ crew of which Latifah was a member during the late 80s and early 90s. Throughout the years, it has served as the production company for several of Latifah’s films, including Bringing Down The House and Beauty Shop. In 2013, the company’s films will include Percentage, a crime thriller starring Ving Rhames and Macy Gray, and House of Bodies, a thriller starring Terrence Howard and Latifah. Clearly, Netflix is hell-bent on acquiring every single title starting with the words “House of”. If you want to get picked up by them, your best bet is to remake House of Sand and Fog.
“Shakim [Compere, the co-founder of Flavor Unit] and I are thrilled to do business with Netflix,” said Latifah. “Netflix is such a strong brand and the perfect place to showcase our projects.” Netflix was similarly positive about the new partnership. “We are delighted to work with Queen Latifah to be the exclusive destination for what are sure to be relevant, entertaining movies,” said Netflix chief content officer Ted Sarandos. “Queen Latifah has a long track record of creating hits, and Flavor Unit Entertainment is a fresh and exciting voice in the industry.”
With more premium content in its library, Netflix continues to push forward as the HBO of online video. If other players want to keep up, they’ll need to start assembling their own impressive rosters.