Television producer, screenwriter and author Shonda Rhimes has signed a multi-year production deal (rumored to be for four years) with streaming service giant Netflix, according to The Wall Street Journal and several other media outlets. Rhimes’ deal essentially ends her 15-year relationship with ABC Studios that yielded hits like Grey’s Anatomy, Scandal and How To Get Away With Murder.
“Shondaland’s move to Netflix is the result of a shared plan Ted 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,” explained Rhimes in a prepared statement.
Though Rhimes will still continue to be involved in her current series, her production company Shondaland will begin producing new series for Netflix as part of the deal. Executive producer Betsy Beers (The Catch) will also be coming on board with Rhimes as part of the structured deal. Grey’s Anatomy, Scandal and How To Get Away With Murder will continue as part of ABC’s programming schedule; and the mid-season series For The People as well as the as-yet-untitled Grey’s Anatomy spin-off that were scheduled for ABC will also not be impacted by the new deal.
For Ted Sarandos, Chief Content Officer, Netflix, it was about the importance of adding Rhimes’ unique artistic vision to the streaming network’s line-up of creative talent:
“Shonda Rhimes is one of the greatest storytellers in the history of television. Her work is gripping, inventive, pulse-pounding, heart-stopping, taboo-breaking television at its best. I’ve gotten the chance to know Shonda and she’s a true Netflixer at heart -— she loves TV and films, she cares passionately about her work, and she delivers for her audience. We’re so excited to welcome her to Netflix.”