The Federation of European Screen Directors (FERA) has made a statement calling out global streaming companies to share viewership figures and pay filmmakers for their success on the platforms. FERA said that streamers should provide verified viewership numbers to filmmakers to allow for “fair negotiations” and avoid the exploitation of their work.
Recent films like the Spain horror movie The Platform, found a lot of success globally, with 56 million Netflix subscribers watching at least 2 minutes of the film. The numbers, however, aren’t given out systematically in a way where filmmakers could negotiate compensation for the successful performance of their films.
“Without information on their works’ actual performance, authors and their representatives are negotiating blindfolded,” said FERA in the statement. They believe that the common practice of purchasing a film or show based on the project’s cost is “unfair,” and that filmmakers should be entitled “to share in the benefits of its use and success to build sustainable careers.
With the COVID-19 pandemic causing streaming services to become more popular than ever before, it makes sense that directors whose films are finding success would like to see a little bit of that success themselves. European directors are traditionally compensated with a share of the exploitation rights for their work as well as compensation relative to their work’s commercial success.
Recent European legislation is working to update copyright laws to govern the online distribution of film so that European creatives are more fairly compensated for the projects they sell to streamers.