In something of a modern twist on the fireside chats made popular by FDR in the 1930s and 1940s, it’s starting to look like former President Barack Obama will soon have his own show on Netflix. Or on Amazon. Or, perhaps, on whatever TV streaming service Apple eventually rolls out. In short, Obama now finds himself at the center of a bidding war between a number of media titans looking to enhance their catalog of original content.
While specific details are few and far in between, The New York Times reports that Obama’s new show will provide him with a “global platform” to talk to the American people about whatever he wants in a relaxed and unfiltered setting. Notably, the report claims that the show could focus on “inspirational stories” or, just as easily, hot takes on whatever happens to be the pertinent political issue of the week.
Put simply, the final incarnation of the show remains a work in progress.
In one possible show idea, Mr. Obama could moderate conversations on topics that dominated his presidency — health care, voting rights, immigration, foreign policy, climate change — and that have continued to divide a polarized American electorate during President Trump’s time in office.
Whatever the format winds up being, there’s no question that landing an exclusive series starring Obama would mark a huge score for whatever media giant secures a deal with him. And from what we’ve seen thus far, it appears that Netflix is currently the front-runner. And with good reason, Netflix currently boasts upwards of 118 million subscribers and is undeniably the 800-pound gorilla in the streaming space. If we’re to presume that Obama’s overarching goal is to reach as many viewers as possible, striking a deal with Netflix seems like the logical choice.
Moreover, Obama is not exactly a stranger to Netflix, having recently starred in the premiere episode of David Letterman’s new Netflix series My Next Guest Needs No Introduction.