Netflix will premiere its much-anticipated music-driven 1970s-set drama series, “The Get Down” this summer. The series will be released in 2 parts; the first half will debut on Friday, August 12, 2016, and will unfold over 6 episodes. Dates on the second half will be announced later.
“The Get Down” will follow a rag-tag crew of South Bronx teenagers in a broken down and beaten up, violent New York City at the brink of bankruptcy, which gave birth to hip-hop, punk and disco – a story told through the lives and music of the South Bronx kids who changed the city, and the world… forever.
Cast members include Justice Smith (playing “Ezekiel”), Shameik Moore (as “Shaolin Fantastic”), Skylan Brooks (as “Ra Ra”), Tremaine Brown, Jr. (as “Boo Boo”), Herizen Guardiola (“Mylene Cruz”), Yahya Abdul-Mateen (“Cadillac”), Mamoudou Athie (“Grandmaster Flash”), Jimmy Smits (“Francisco Cruz” aka “Papa Fuerte”) and Jaden Smith (Marcus “Dizzee” Kipling).
Luhrmann directed and serves as executive producer of the series which is also executive produced by Nas, Catherine Martin, Paul Watters, Thomas Kelly, Stephen Adly Guirgis, Shawn Ryan and Marney Hochman.
In a Variety report on the upcoming series, it’s stated that “The Get Down” is among the most expensive TV series in history, costing around $120 million for the 12-episode season. In a piece titled “Inside the Troubled Production of Baz Luhrmann’s ‘The Get Down,’ Netflix’s Most Expensive Series Yet,” there’s this paragraph:
“Over the two-and-a-half years since the hip-hop-focused project was set up at Netflix, Luhrmann went through two showrunners, numerous writers, and no small amount of strain with producer Sony Pictures Television. Production of the 12-episode season, the first half of which premieres Aug. 12, went well over the original budget of about $7.5 million per episode and wound up costing at least $120 million overall, with New York state tax incentives factored in, according to sources. That makes “The Get Down,” Luhrmann’s first TV series, among the most expensive in history. It’s a huge bet even for Netflix, which has disrupted Hollywood with a seemingly limitless budget for original programming.”
I recall when another Netflix series, “House of Cards” was still in production for its first season, and the talk of the town was how expensive it reportedly was – something in the $100 million range. Netflix has been notoriously secretive about budgets and ratings, so how accurate these figures all are is anyone’s guess. At $120 million for “The Get Down,” that is indeed a big bet for the company; it’s rare that projects with primarily black casts (or people of color in general) get monstrous, potentially historic budgets like this. To compare, competitor HBO’s biggest hit series, “Game of Thrones” reportedly cost $6 to 10 million per episode.
Netflix has released a new trailer for “The Get Down” which is embedded below: