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New ‘Top Gear’ Series Coming to Netflix

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Pictured (from left to right): Rory Reid, Sabine Schmitz, Matt LeBlanc, Chris Evans (not that one), Chris Harris, Eddie Jordan, and The Stig
Photo: Twitter/Chris Evans (not that one)

When Jeremy Clarkson was kicked off of the BBC’s Top Gear program and James May and Richard Hammond followed, there was industry speculation as to where the very popular trio would end up. Netflix seemed like a natural choice, as the streaming service is already Top Gear’s streaming home on the web, but it was soon announced that Amazon Prime would be hosting the new show instead. Not only did Netflix pass on the latest production from Jeremy Clarkson and his friends, but the service has recommitted itself to the original Top Gear franchise.

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According to Digial Spy, Netflix decided to pass on the old Top Gear trio’s latest venture because it was too expensive. The service had examined their viewing numbers for the episodes already on Netflix and determined that the $250 million paid by Amazon Video was more money than the new production would be worth to them. It should be noted that later Netflix backtracked, telling Digital Spy, “There is an audience for everything and it is not up to us to judge if Amazon has paid too much or not.”

To further confirm their commitment to the BBC and the original Top Gear franchise, it has recently been announced that Netflix will be the streaming home of the new the new version of Top Gear, starring the likes of Chris Evans (not that one) and Matt LeBlanc. This will be after it first airs on an American network, probably on BBC America.

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It hardly seems surprising that  Netflix has decided to keep streaming Top Gear, but it could prove interesting in future negotiations for streaming rights. Netflix is the home of many BBC TV shows in America, but recently the broadcasting giant removed the modern series of Doctor Who from Netflix and gave exclusive streaming rights to Amazon Video. Perhaps in future negations, representatives of Netflix might bring up their loyalty to BBC franchises to gain extra leverage over the retailing giant’s streaming service.

News Source: Digital Spy and Jalopnik