Netflix’s next stunt to charm major awards show voters is a full-fledged magazine.
The 100-page inaugural issue is set to be published in June, and will highlight some of the nearly 700 projects Netflix released last year as well as the talent behind them, Bloomberg reports.
That publication month, of course, is no coincidence: June is when members of the television academy vote on Emmy nominations. Netflix will pass out copies of the magazine, tentatively called Wide, at events set up to promote its original programming to Emmys voters. The magazine apparently won’t be distributed outside of those events — at least for now.
Once Emmys voting season is over, Wide isn’t going to go away. In fact, considering Netflix just hired Vanity Fair editor Krista Smith as a long-term consultant for Wide, it’s likely the publication is intended to become a staple promotional avenue for at least some of the other major awards Netflix regularly goes out for, including the Golden Globes and the Academy Awards.
“In preparation for a groundbreaking year in film and television, Netflix has gathered some of the most talented and sought after writers and photographers, thinkers and creatives, to make the inaugural issue of Wide, the Netflix print journal,” the company wrote in an email Bloomberg acquired.
If putting together an entire magazine seems like an enormous effort on Netflix’s part to scoop up awards — well, it is. But it’s also not the only big push the streamer has made. Last year, it spent at least $25 million, and reportedly as much as $60 million, trying to win Roma a Best Picture Oscar. That money was splashed out on ads in entertainment industry magazines, themed coffee-table books, costume exhibitions, TV spots, cocktail receptions, panel discussions, billboards, and bus shelter ads. The obviously pricey bid sparked criticism from Academy voters, some of whom allegedly didn’t vote for Roma to send the message that awards can’t be bought.
Also, this week, news emerged that Netflix had considered buying the Landmark Theatres chain in order to screen its own films and thus qualify them for the Academy Awards. The deal ultimately fell through, but there are rumors that Netflix is currently in negotiations to run its programming during weekdays at The Egyptian Theatre Hollywood, a historic landmark run by the nonprofit organization American Cinematheque.