Ted Sarandos to keynote BANFF’s Summit Series

Netflix's chief content officer will take part in a fireside chat set for Monday, June 15.
Ted Sarandos Headshot

Banff World Media Festival (BANFF) has revealed that Netflix’s Ted Sarandos will serve as the first keynote for its 2020 Summit Series, with the streamer’s chief content officer taking part in a fireside chat on Monday, June 15.

Sarandos, among the most influential figures in the content business, oversees the teams responsible for the acquisition and creation of all Netflix TV series and films. He led Netflix’s first forays into original content in 2013 and in recent years he has overseen a slate that includes Stranger Things, Umbrella Academy and The Crown, as well as feature films such as To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before, The Irishman, Bird Box, ROMA and Marriage Story.

“Great stories can come from anywhere, and many have had their beginnings at Banff World Media Festival. Netflix is proud to be a part of BANFF, working with our incredible partners and deepening our commitment to a vibrant Canadian creative community whose work is seen and loved by the world,” commented Sarandos in a statement.

Considered one of the most powerful people in the entertainment world, he has been key to landing major deals with top producers such as Shonda Rhimes and Ryan Murphy, as well as former U.S. president Barack Obama and his wife Michelle. And under his watch, Netflix led the industry in Oscar nominations this year with 24 nods.

“We’re thrilled to welcome Ted to the incredible lineup of top-tier speakers at our Summit Series,” said Randy Lennox, chair of the board of directors, BANFF, and president of Bell Media. “This year’s line-up is going to be full of industry leaders and legendary innovators, resulting in fascinating conversations that can’t be missed.”

“Ted’s contributions to global media have been astounding and revolutionary,” added BANFF executive director, Jenn Kuzmyk. “It’s almost impossible to quantify the impact that Netflix and its content has had within the entertainment business as well as the daily lives of people around the globe. Ted continues to support new voices and champion groundbreaking work, raising the bar for creative excellence.”

Since it launched in Canada in 2010, Netflix has grown its paid subscriber base to somewhere north of 6.5 million. According to Netflix, its production spending in Canada exceeded $500 million between September 2017 and September 2019. Globally, the service has more than 167 million paid members.

BANFF’s Summit Series, launched last year, has previously featured Quibi founder and Dreamworks co-founder Jeffrey Katzenberg, PBS CEO Paula Kerger, AMC Networks’ Sarah Barnett and Paul Feig.

This year’s BANFF runs from June 14 to 17.