‘The Power of the Dog’ Director Jane Campion Speaks on ‘Sad’ Reality of Netflix Losing Subscribers

by Craig Garrett

After facing a loss of subscribers, Jane Campion worries that Netflix may now be too cautious with the projects it funds. “I do think they’re going to be more picky about other projects,” Campion said in a recent BBC interview. “What’s sad is not taking risks on people without names,” the director added.

Jane Campion’s 2021 Western The Power of the Dog racked up 12 nominations at the Academy Awards. She thinks that established filmmakers, such as herself, will be able to survive the storm. However, she is concerned that the new approach will jeopardize the chances of future filmmakers. “I don’t think it would be hard for me if I wanted to do something because I’ve established a relationship and they’re incredibly loyal,” Campion claimed.

Netflix was instrumental in getting Power of the Dog made according to Jane Campion. However, the business’s viewpoint has changed since the film’s release during the height of last year’s awards season.

Campion’s concern is due to recent financial losses by Netflix

At the end of Q1, the streamer said it had lost 200,000 subscribers. In Q2, it expects to lose another two million customers. In order to maintain its margins at 20%, Netflix committed to reducing expenses. Despite all of this, the streamer still intends to spend heavily on shows and films. It has an impressive budget of $17 billion in 2022 for content.

There were reports that Netflix offered Jane Campion a budget of over 30 million for Power of the Dog. However, she was quick to cut such claims down. “They didn’t offer me that much, that would have been nice,” she quipped. But we had budgeted the cost of it and the only people that were willing to go near that was Netflix.”

Campion and Netflix have one ongoing project, but not a film

Power of the Dog received an Academy Award for best director, making it only the third time a woman has won the prize. It lost out to “Coda” in the best picture competition. Jane Campion noted the Apple TV+ film’s victory on Oscar night.

“With the Academy, it seemed that ‘CODA’ really captured the hearts of people,” she said. “It was an easier film to understand and, you know, that’s the way it went and I’m happy for them.”

Campion also said that she has no current plans to produce another feature film. Instead, the award-winning director wants to concentrate on a pop-up film school she has established in Wellington, New Zealand. The school is currently funded by Netflix.

“I was thinking, ‘Oh gosh, they might withdraw the money, they can’t make sense of it,’” Campion said. “But I’m really thrilled that they’re not doing that.”