Netflix CEO Ted Sarandos has revealed that Stranger Things was financially impacted by the Covid pandemic more than many of Netflix’s other shows.
He admitted that the pandemic's burden made it difficult for Netflix to spend additional costs due to the virus. He revealed that Covid costs were on average about 5/10% of its content spend. That's a pretty huge sum considering that Netflix is spending around $17B this year.
“If you did that all again and took that off the top you might even get a couple of extra episodes out of it,” said Sarandos.
Though it’s not clear whether Ted meant that the fourth season, would have 11 episodes or that the extra costs attributed to shutdowns would have paid for a couple of episodes. But either way, it’s clear that Covid had a huge impact on Stranger Things.
“[Stranger Things] was probably affected as any [by Covid] because of the young cast and the size and scope of the production and the multiple locations that we shot in. It was a very expensive burden on the show to make sure that we could deliver it. One of the catalysts of splitting the season was how long it took to produce that show and a lot of that was stalled because of early shutdowns of the production and being extremely careful with the cast of the show, early on in Covid,” he added.