Netflix wants you to know Umbrella Academy, Triple Frontier, and Fyre are so hot right now

Once upon a time, Netflix never shared how many people watch its shows. Then it realized people want to watch what they know other people are watching.

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Joan E. Solsman
3 min read
The characters of Umbrella Academy stand in a courtyard holding umbrellas

Netflix's superhero series Umbrella Academy was watched by 45 million members' households.


Netflix is happy to brag about how many of its 148 million subscribers are watching its shows and movies -- it means more of you sheeple will click play too. 

Netflix let spill Tuesday that its heist movie Triple Frontier was watched by 52 million accounts, superhero series Umbrella Academy by 45 million and its Fyre Festival documentary by 25 million, all in their first month of release. These stats -- as was the case three months ago when it unleashed another flood of viewer metrics -- came as Netflix reported its quarterly results

"We're trying to get to a place where we can be a lot more transparent, both with our producers and with our customers, who are...influenced heavily by 'What's the world watching?'" Netflix's head of content Ted Sarandos said Tuesday during an live-streamed interview. He and CEO Reed Hastings added that Netflix would be rolling out more of these viewership stats over the coming year. 

"We're just beginning to start to share that data," Hastings said. 

Previously, Netflix was famously tight-lipped about how many people watch its stuff. The creator of House of Cards, the show that put Netflix original content on the map, once said the company wouldn't even share viewership metrics with him. Netflix has dribbled out popularity details in the past. It said that Bright in 2017 was one of its most popular titles in its first month and that Adam Sandler movies accumulated 500 million hours of viewing at one point. But few of those disclosures include "here's how many members watched" specifics. 

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But in January, the streaming giant disclosed that apocalyptic thriller Bird Box was watched by an eye-popping 80 million accounts in four weeks. And considering the number of people who watch Netflix on a single account, the actual number was presumed to be even higher. 

Netflix on Tuesday added more stats for a handful of its shows:

  • Umbrella Academy has been watched by 45 million member households in its first four weeks.
  • Triple Frontier, starring Ben Affleck, has been watched by more than 52 million member households in its first four weeks.
  • The Highwaymen, starring Kevin Costner and Woody Harrelson as two lawmen who bring Bonnie and Clyde to justice, is on track to be watched by more than 40 million member households in its first month.
  • Documentary feature Fyre: The Greatest Party That Never Happened has been watched by more than 20 million member households in its first month.
  • Our Planet, a nature documentary created by many of the people who made some of the BBC's popular docs, "is tracking to be one of our most successful global documentary series launches yet." More than 25 million member households are projected to watch in the first month of release.

Later, the company's head of content added another stat the the list: You Vs Wild, an interactive series aimed at families starring Bear Grylls, is expected to be watched by 25 million people "spending a lot of time" on the show in its first 28 days, Sarandos said. 

Originally published at 2:19 p.m. PT.
Updated at 2:56 p.m. PT: With executive comments and details about You Vs Wild.