“Thank God It’s Thursday,” is slowly fading away as Shonda Rhimes, one of the most lucrative writers/producers of her time takes a move from ABC Network to Netflix. Rhimes has signed an exclusive multi-year deal with Netflix, the streaming giant announced early Monday morning.
Rhimes is best-known for her top shows Scandal, How To Get Away With Murder, and Grey’s Anatomy. These shows will remain on ABC despite Netflix having streaming rights to their back library.
Rhimes stated that “Shondaland’s move to Netflix is the result of a shared plan Ted Sarandos and I built based on my vision for myself as a storyteller and for the evolution of my company. Ted provides a clear, fearless space for creators at Netflix. He understood what I was looking for — the opportunity to build a vibrant new storytelling home for writers with the unique creative freedom and instantaneous global reach provided by Netflix’s singular sense of innovation.”
“The future of Shondaland at Netflix has limitless possibilities.”
Rhimes has contributed to more than just three popular shows; she has given back to other writers and her community in various ways. Shonda recently set up a 30-video online seminar with Master Class to teach the art and business of television writing. The videos almost all feature Rhimes talking directly to the camera in a comfortable cardigan, which makes the class feel a little like hanging out in her living room. The class uses scripts and other materials from Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal to teach aspiring writers about the nuts and bolts of the television writing process.
Rhimes is also known for her new bestselling book, “Year of Yes,” which details how her entire life changed when she committed to saying “yes” to everything for one year. She reciprocates her life story through this publication that gives a positive spin to the most tragic moments.
With this transition, losing Rhimes has definitely taken a hit on ABC and its corporate parent, Disney. The network finished in the last place among the advertiser-coveted demographic for a second straight season, and though it is doing fine with comedies, it badly needs a hit drama. Netflix has invested $6 billion into original content this year alone to take viewers away from big networks like Disney, 21st Century Fox, NBCUniversal and CBS Corp.
Some say Netflix made this move to unprecedentedly “get back” at Disney after their announcement of its own streaming service earlier this week.
Channing Dungey, ABC’s entertainment president recently stated, “I’m proud to have given a home to what have become some of the most celebrated and talked-about shows on television. With the launch of a new season upon us, fans can rest assured that TGIT remains intact and will be as buzzed about as ever.”