Netflix praised at Producers Guild Panel

Streaming giant Netflix received strong support from filmmakers behind “The Irishman” and “Marriage Story” at the Producers Guild of America’s nominees panel on Saturday at the Skirball Cultural Center in Los Angeles.

Jane Rosenthal, one of “The Irishman” producers, said Netflix embraced the vision that she and Martin Scorsese had for the $170 million film. The time-jumping epic received a limited theatrical release prior to its Nov. 29 streaming release.

 “Netflix has been extraordinary,” Rosenthal said. “Our business is changing. We still want to see movies in theaters. I think more people will wind up seeing a DeNiro-Scorsese movie than their other movies combined. As a filmmaker and producer, our goal is to get people to see our movies. It really has been an extraordinary experience.”

Noah Baumbach, director-producer of “Marriage Story,” was effusive in his praise of Netflix for re-opening New York City’s Paris Theater — one of the oldest art movie houses in the United States and the last single-screen theater in New York. Netflix announced on Nov. 25 a lease agreement to keep the theater open.

 “Netflix saved and resuscitated the Paris Theater,” Baumbach said. “You can’t ask for a better theatrical experience. They found ways to eventize more filmmaker-driven movies. They are looking to bring back the elegance of going to a  movie theater. It’s sad in New York that all these great theaters have closed. That was a real thrill to go to the Paris and have a full house watching my movie.”

Netflix gave “Marriage Story” a limited release in theaters on Nov. 6 prior to its streaming release on Dec. 6. The Saturday morning panel is a prelude to the 31st Annual PGA Awards at The Hollywood Palladium in Los Angeles. The event included producers of all 10 films nominated for the Darryl F. Zanuck Outstanding Producer of Theatrical Motion Pictures — Pippa Harris for “1917,” Jenno Topping for “Ford v. Ferrari,” Carthew Neal for “Jojo Rabbit,” Emma Tillinger Koskoff for “Joker,” Ram Bergman for “Knives Out,” Amy Pascal for “Little Women,” David Heyman who is double nominated for “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood” and “Marriage Story” and Bong Joon Ho for “Parasite.”    —Variety