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Netflix released a teaser trailer for its upcoming original TV show House of Cards today, which features director David Fincher and actor Kevin Spacey.
Netflix won an expensive bidding war with other premium cable channels (HBO, Showtime) to gain the rights to air the show over its streaming video service last year. And unlike those cable channels, the company plans to release all 13 episodes February 1, 2013.
Judging from the trailer alone, it seems like Netflix may have its first truly HBO-quality hit. At any rate, House of Cards will certainly be better than Lilyhammer, the company’s first attempt at original programing. Netflix is also scheduled to debut other original shows in 2013, including the resurrected Arrested Development.
For Netflix, a lot is riding on the success of this show. Not only is the company spending a ton of money on producing original programming, but it’s also pursuing an aggressive international expansion. Both of these actions use profits from Netflix’s domestic subscription business, which didn’t report much of a profit in the latest quarterly earnings report. That caused Netflix’s stock price to drop. If that wasn’t enough, billionaire financier Carl Icahn grabbed a 10-percent stake in the company with the intent of selling Netflix off to a larger company.
If House of Cards is wildly popular (and increases domestic subscriptions), it could provide some proof to shareholders that Netflix’s current business strategy is indeed working.
We’ve embedded the trailer video below. Let us know what you think of it in the comment section.