Television icon Ellen DeGeneres will be headlining a stand-up special for Netflix. The video-streaming giant, on its website, announced that this special would mark Ellen’s anticipated return to stand-up comedy.
“It has been 15 years since I did a stand-up special. 15 years. And I’m writing it now, I can’t wait. I’ll keep you posted when and where I’m gonna shoot my Netflix special. I’m excited to do it; I’m excited for you to see it,” Ellen said.
Ellen isn’t the only celebrity that Netflix is talking to. In March, the video streaming site roped in comedian Kevin James for a stand-up special. The comic special, slated to shoot later this year, will launch worldwide on Netflix in 2018. Recent specials Netflix has released include shows from Tracy Morgan, Amy Schumer, and Louis CK.
Netflix to rope in foreign comedians too?
If all goes well, Netflix might rope in stand-up comedians in other languages too. The company, however, has made no such announcements. It’s worth noting that the video-streaming app has been actively seeking foreign language translators and content localization specialists.
Netflix, in its job description, on Glass Door mentioned that the content localization specialist would be responsible for ensuring Netflix customers across the globe get the highest-quality experience from our subtitles and audio dubs.
“Working on Netflix’s growing catalog including our original content, you will be deeply involved in the creative process. The ideal candidate will have a great passion for language, a deep appreciation of regional cultural differences, and a high level of intellectual curiosity,” the job posting on Glass Door read.
Deep understanding of differences, subtleties, and nuances between subtitle and dub translation, and working knowledge around territorial differences and best practices for subtitle and dub audio creation and expectations are the core traits that the company is looking for.
About five years ago, Netflix offered only English language content, primarily focused on U.S and U.K audience. However, considering the surge in Netflix users in the last couple of years from other countries, the entertainment app started doling out foreign language series too.
Netflix currently supports over 20 foreign language content, including French, Spanish, Polish, Chinese Korean, Tamil, Hindi, and more.
“Our desire to delight members in “their” language, while staying true to creative intent and mindful of cultural nuances is important to ensure quality. It’s also fueling a need to rapidly add great talent who can help provide top-notch translations for our global members across all of these languages,” the company said in its recent blog post.
HERMES, the evaluation tool for translators
In Mid-March, Netflix launched an evaluation platform called HERMES, the first online subtitling and translation test and indexing system. The test, according to Netflix, is designed to be highly scalable and consists of thousands of randomized combinations of questions so that no two tests should be the same. The rounds consist of multiple choice questions given at a specifically timed pace, designed to test the candidate’s ability to understand English, translate idiomatic phrases into their target language, identify both linguistic and technical errors, and subtitle proficiently.
“We’re quickly approaching an inflection point where English won’t be the primary viewing experience on Netflix, and HERMES allows us to better vet the individuals doing this very important work so members can enjoy their favorite TV shows and movies in their language,” the company said.
The translators, who get through the test, will not be direct employees of Netflix. They will work through a third party. In some instances that will be for a localization vendor and others through a staffing agency.
[Featured Image by Amy Sussman/Invision for PetSmart/AP Images]