Former President Barack Obama and his wife Michelle are currently in negotiations with Netflix, according to the New York Times.
The Obamas are reportedly interested in producing a number of shows, with a focus on inspirational stories. Their partnership with Netflix would mean an international platform, with the streaming service reaching the homes of 118 million people worldwide.
Recently, former “Late Show” host David Letterman signed on for a series of six episodes with the streaming giant, rolling out his debut with President Obama as his first guest. During the interview, Obama expressed his disdain for Fox News, saying “If you watch Fox News, you are living on a different planet than you are if you are listening to NPR. If I watch Fox News, I wouldn’t vote for me. I would watch it and say ‘Who is that guy.'”
The New York Times article speculated possible show scenarios and said “Mr. Obama does not intend to use his Netflix shows to directly respond to President Trump or conservative critics.”
Obama has close ties to Netflix higher-ups, particularly the company’s CEO Reed Hastings, and chief content officer Ted Sarandos.
Eric Schultz, a senior advisor to Obama, told The Times “President and Mrs. Obama have always believed in the power of storytelling to inspire. Throughout their lives, they have lifted up stories of people whose efforts to make a difference are quietly changing the world for the better. As they consider their future personal plans, they continue to explore new ways to help others tell and share their stories.”
Netflix has been investing heavily in exclusive content for years, and introduced the popular show House of Cards in its first self-commissioned series. The streaming service is also responsible for the production of popular shows like Stranger Things, Orange is the New Black, and Ozark, as well as numerous documentaries and films.
The Obamas have made several lucrative arrangements since leaving the White House, included books deals and speaking engagements with estimated payouts totaling into the tens of millions.
Other streaming services have also expressed an interest in providing a platform to the Obamas, namely Amazon and Apple.