Netflix Signs Shonda Rhimes


The battle between Netflix and Disney got a little more intense this morning.

After spending 15 years at Disney and ABC producing shows like “Scandal,” “Grey’s Anatomy” and “How to Get Away with Murder,” Shonda Rhimes signed a multiyear exclusive deal with Netflix. Disney and Netflix have been battling for some time. Just days ago, Disney announced won’t be renewing its deal with Netflix and that it plans to launch its own streaming service. As part of the deal, Rhimes will move her production company ShondaLand from its current base at Walt Disney Co.’s Studios to Netflix.

Rhimes said, “I’m thrilled by the idea of a world where I’m not caught in the necessary grind of network television.”

Netflix has been known to more than double the compensation offered by traditional media companies. Important for marketers as the deal represents another example of big talent moving away from ad-funded TV. A deal like this could spark a war for talent.