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Will Tubi Start Developing Original Content? Doesn’t Sound Like It

Jason Gurwin

Over the past year, Tubi has rapidly expanded their content library to include more than 12,000 movies and television series – which is more than double in size to Netflix – approximately 40,000 hours of content. The service is available on most connected devices including Fire TV, Roku, Apple TV, iOS, Android, and Xfinity X1.

But, one thing the free ad-supported streaming service won’t compete on with Netflix is original content. In an interview at The Promax Conference, an entertainment marketing conference, Adam Lewinson, Chief Content Officer at Tubi said, “I encourage all of my competitors to develop and produce original series.”

Part of the issue that Lewinson sees is that he doesn’t know “how anybody except for maybe Netflix or Amazon” can produce original content at the same scale as networks like FX and HBO. “Unless someone really thinks that they can make big bets on that watercolor show (like a Game of Thrones), I don’t know that it’s the best bet to make from a programmer’s standpoint.”

While the focus for Tubi to date has been library content, like their deal with NBCUniversal for 400 classic TV shows and films like Hercules and Xena — the company isn’t shying away from more recent content. “As a programmer, my job is whatever our viewer wants to watch, I need to get it to them as fast as possible,” said Lewinson.

He highlighted their recent addition of the most recent season of Bachelor in Paradise, which came as part of a deal with Warner Bros. “We do content that is very recent, first run movies, and then going farther back in the library.”