Some Netflix Creators Reportedly Unhappy With Mid-Roll Advertisements

By Jessica Lerner 

Not everyone is happy with Netflix’s ad-supported tier, or at least the placement of ads.

Shonda Rhimes, Trevor Macy and Mike Flanagan are among the showrunners, writers, and creators who are upset with the streamer’s choice to include mid-video ads in their content, believing the ads interrupt their storytelling, per CNBC.

In response, Netflix executives said that midroll advertisements were inserted at strategic intervals that fit the plot lines of each show, the news outlet reports.


However, some creators haven’t been satisfied with the justifications. For example, as CNBC notes, Intrepid Pictures creates horror movies and TV shows for the streamer, which are particularly bad for ad insertion because they prevent the development of tension.

The streamer debuted Basic with Ads last week with a few speedbumps. More than 250 titles aren’t available on the lower-cost option, and the ad-supported tier doesn’t work with Apple TV or Apple TV 4K devices.

Moreover, Netflix has informed creators that it will not be splitting any advertising revenue with them, not anticipating that many subscribers will sign up for the basic advertising tier, in comparison to those who will pay for no ads.

Not every artist has a problem with Netflix. The three-act structure of Ryan Murphy’s shows makes it simple to include advertisements, and The Queen’s Gambit co-creator Scott Frank hasn’t objected either.