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January 5, 2024
Peter Calder

Money Heist Gone Viral (1 minute read)

Online streaming can sometimes be a topic pulled in multiple directions within the film and TV community.  In a world of social media influencers and products popping up left and right, you would think it’s easier to get things seen.  “Money Heist” is an interesting case study for this.  I  enjoyed the thrilling series.  

You would be surprised to hear that the series aired way back in 2017 on a local station called  Antena 3 in Spain.  The original series was made for Spanish television with fifteen 70-minute  episodes and was seen by 4 million viewers.  It was regarded as incredibly popular in Spain.  But, after it aired, that was sort of it for the original series, a lot of the actors and filmmakers didn’t think anything more would come from it.  Then Netflix came on the scene and released it onto Netflix Spain.  They re-cut the series into twenty-two 50-minute episodes, obtained the global streaming rights for the show, and dubbed the series into English.  The series took off dramatically once Netflix added it to the global catalogue.  They quickly renewed for another season (Part 3).  

When Part 3 came out, it was viewed by 34 million people in just the first week of being available, making it the most viewed series on Netflix ever at the time.  After this, the show created quite a sensation worldwide.  People wore the famous costumes from the show; a documentary was even made about the series’ hype.  Also, there have already been two show spin-offs: a South Korean adaption and one just last week, “Berlin,” aired about one of the characters in the original show.  

This case study shows just how important and powerful a platform is.  Netflix is the biggest streaming platform in the world and raised Money Heist into the stratosphere.  Many strongly argue about how problematic big streaming platforms can be by controlling what people can or can’t see and often don’t show enough indie, lower budget or international productions.  But, in this case, I think Money Heist shows how beneficial and positive a bigger platform can be by showcasing great international works that are appreciated worldwide.