Netflix audiences adopt The Willoughbys

Willoughbys - Production Stills - 110_110
The latest family flick from Bron Animation was viewed by approximately 37.6 million households in a four-week period, according to the streamer.

Canadian animation The Willoughbys made a splash this spring with cooped-up families looking for kid-friendly content.

The 3D-animated family film, produced by Bron Animation, has been viewed by an estimated 37.6 million households since its global release on April 22, according to Netflix. The streamer counts a view once a title is watched for at least two minutes. The number reflects the number of accounts that have watched the film, meaning it does not account for repeat viewings.

In Canada, The Willoughbys hit the Netflix Top 10 list on April 23 at No. 5, below titles Too Hot to Handle, The Last Dance, Waco and Outer Banks, while landing the No. 1 spot on the Top Film list. It stayed in the Top 10 for six days and the Top Film list for 10.

Directed by Kris Pearn, the film follows four siblings who hatch a plan to send their self-centered parents on a vacation so they can raise themselves. It is based on the children’s book of the same name, which Bron Animation bought the rights to back in 2015. Netflix acquired the global rights to the film in 2018.

The multi-million viewer success is a culmination of more than five years of work from Bron Animation, which opted to choose Netflix as a distributor to give the film its best chance at visibility, Brenda Gilbert, Bron Media Corporation co-founder and president, told Playback Daily in an interview at the film’s release.

The streamer also released audience statistics on Jusqu’au déclin (The Decline), the first Netflix commission from Quebec. The feature, directed by Patrice Laliberté and produced by Julie Groleau of Couronne Nord, was viewed by 21 million households, according to Netflix.

The Willoughbys and Jusqu’au déclin are the latest Canadian projects to see success on Netflix in 2020. Code 8, which is available on Crave in Canada and Netflix internationally, hit the No. 2 slot in the U.S. Top 10 list following its April 11 debut, falling just short of Tiger King. The sci-fi film, which stars Robbie Amell and Stephen Amell and is produced by Colony Pictures, also made the Top 10 lists in Finland, Mexico, Brazil, Chile, Australia, Netherlands and South Africa, to name a few.