Code 8 decodes Netflix algorithm, surges to top of streamer’s charts

After generating North American VOD revenues of $5 million, the Telefilm-backed feature continues to exceed expectations by topping Netflix's daily film list in the U.S.

Canadian feature Code 8 is off to a flying start following its release on Netflix in the U.S. and internationally.

As of yesterday, the project – released on Netflix outside Canada on Saturday (April 11) – was second in the streamer’s daily Top 10 chart in the U.S., behind only Tiger King and ahead of third-placed Ozark. It was also number one on Netflix’s “Top Movies in the U.S. Today” section on Monday.

In the U.K. and France, where it was also released on April 11, the film climbed to the top position in Netflix’s daily top 10, while it sits in the top five in Finland, Mexico, Brazil, Chile, Australia, Netherlands, South Africa and many others.

Netflix introduced the “Top 10″ lists in all international markets in February. The new tool counts a “view” when a project is watched for two minutes or more.

The impressive Netflix debut comes after the project, produced through Jeff Chan and Chris Pare’s Colony Pictures, posted mammoth VOD revenues through Apple, Amazon and Vudu, with the film’s North American VOD release generating upwards of $5 million since its release on Dec. 13, 2019. It was also the highest grossing day-and-date digital release of all time for both Vertical (U.S.) and Elevation (Canada).

The project, which stars Canadian actors and cousins Stephen and Robbie Amell, was first launched as an Indiegogo campaign in 2016. It quickly became the largest-ever crowd-funded campaign for a Canadian film on any crowd-funding platform, hitting $2.4 million in just over one month.

Directed by Chan and written by Chris Paré, the sci-fi action movie is distributed in Canada by Elevation Pictures, with XYZ Films handling foreign sales. Domestically, the film streams on Bell Media streamer Crave.

Code 8 is set in a world where a small percentage of the population is born with supernatural abilities. Instead of being celebrated, these “specials” often live in poverty and resort to crime to get by. In addition to the funds raised through Indiegogo, Code 8 was financed by Telefilm and U.K. based Fyzz Facility.

The feature also caught the eye of Jeffrey Katzenberg and Meg Whitman, who greenlit development on a spinoff version for short-form service Quibi in December. The spinoff takes place years after the events of the movie and centres on an ex-con and a telekinetic drug dealer who must work together to bring down a dangerous trafficking ring.