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‘No political slant to programming’ in Obama productions on Netflix, says top executive

The streaming platform’s chief content officer, Ted Sarandos, said there would be no bias in the programming.

The programming by the Obama couple on Netflix will be free of political bias, the streaming platform’s chief content officer Ted Sarandos said on Tuesday.

Netflix’s multi-year deal with Higher Ground Productions, the company formed by former American president Barack Omaba and his wife, Michelle, is for documentaries, films, doc-series and lifestyle shows. “This is not The Obama Network,” Sarandos told journalist Ken Auletta at the Paley Center for Media in New York City. “There’s no political slant to the programming.”

Auletta pointed out that Sarandos is a registered Democrat, and that there was a perception that Netflix was leaning towards the Left, especially after former Obama adviser Susan Rice was recently appointed to its board.

“Umm, wait for the programming,” Sarandos said, according to a Variety report.

“Sarandos in particular has a close relationship with the Obamas,” Variety added. “His wife, Nicole Avant, served as U.S. ambassador to the Bahamas in President Obama’s first term in office.”

Sarandos told Auletta that the Obamas were forming Higher Ground Productions as they were leaving the White House. “I didn’t want to see them go anywhere else because I think they’ll be great at it,” he said. “The original content Netflix greenlights and distributes is ‘an aggregation of all those storytellers,’ not reflecting ‘the politics of me’ or Netflix chairman and CEO Reed Hastings,” Sarandos added.

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