With the debate about how Netflix released “The Irishman” in the rearview mirror, we can now move ahead with just how well (or not) the film has done since its debut on the streaming service on November 27. Recently, it was reported that the first five days of release were strong for Martin Scorsese’s latest film, but according to a Netflix exec, we now know how many households have streamed “The Irishman” in the film’s first week on the platform.
Netflix’s Chief Content Officer, Ted Sarandos, who spoke at the recent UBS Global TMT Conference (via THR), revealed that “The Irishman” was streamed by 26.4 million households in its first seven days of release. He also predicts that the film will be streamed by over 40 million households by the end of the first month. Of course, before we talk about how these numbers rank, we have to first clear up just what they mean.
When Netflix says that a “household” viewed content, the streaming service means that an account has watched at least 70% of the film. These numbers also don’t take into consideration multiple viewings from the same account. So, 26.4 million accounts have viewed at least 70% of “The Irishman.” That’s a pretty strong number, especially given the subject matter and the film’s massive runtime.
But when you consider numbers for previous film and TV releases by the streaming service, it’s clear that “The Irishman” didn’t break any streaming records, even if it has been a big hit for Netflix.
If Sarandos is correct and “The Irishman” reaches 40 million households in its first month, the film wouldn’t break the Top 8 of most popular Netflix launches (per Business Insider). In fact, the crime drama would be beaten by the recently released YA series “Tall Girl” (41 million), as well as other film/TV projects such as “The Umbrella Academy” (45 million), “The Perfect Date” (48 million), and “Stranger Things 3” (64 million).
When you look at other films, especially ones with A-list actors and a well-known filmmaker, the launch of “The Irishman” would fall well short of titles such as Ben Affleck’s “Triple Frontier” (52 million), Adam Sandler’s “Murder Mystery” (73 million), and Sandra Bullock’s “Bird Box” (80 million). So, yes “The Irishman” is doing well, but Scorsese is no Adam Sandler in the eyes of Netflix subscribers.
The executive also revealed that Scorsese is very pleased with the popularity of his film, as you might expect.
“[Scorsese] was very happy,” Sarandos said. “Betting that Martin Scorsese is going to make a great movie with Robert De Niro and Joe Pesci and Al Pacino is not that big of a stretch.”
You can stream “The Irishman” now on Netflix.