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Most Watched Netflix Original Movies From 38 Countries Around the World

Most Watched Netflix Originals From 38 Countries

Picture: Adobe Stock

Over the years, Netflix has either produced or acquired movies from dozens of countries around the globe. While their biggest certainly originate from only a handful of countries, we thought we’d take a deep dive into Netflix stats and see what movie is the biggest from 38 countries.

For this analysis, we’re using the Complete Viewing Equivalent metric over the first 14 days of the release of Netflix Original films between June 2021 and January 2024. The CVE metric is obtained by dividing the number of hours viewed released by Netflix every week by the runtime of the films. Netflix now refers to this metric as “views.”

We’re also categorizing the regional organization as its enforced by Netflix with six big geographical areas: UCAN (the United States and Canada), LATAM (Latin America), APAC (Asia and Pacific), Europe, Middle East and Africa (that Netflix aggregates into an EMEA area).

Let’s dive right in with a big infographic showing the most-watched original Netflix movies from 38 countries:

Global Map Most Popular Movies From Around The World

Note: You can click the image above for the full-scale version.

Beyond the raw numbers, let’s keep in mind that it is easier for an American film to reach 80M CVEs than for an international film, and with that said, some films stand out in their regions.

Let’s name the Norwegian film Troll, of course, the American film Red Notice (which was an astounding success even for an American film), the Spanish film Nowhere released in late 2023, the Romanian film The Father Who Moves Mountains, the Peruvian romantic comedy Without Saying Goodbye, Thai thriller Hunger, Turkish film In Good Hands and Nigerian action film The Black Book.

troll 2 coming soon to netfix

Picture: Netflix

Then, some countries seem to be lacking a huge success relative to their size or output. Latin America, for instance, has not had huge success in films globally, with the biggest success being the Brazilian romantic film Someone Borrowed, with a low 24M CVEs. Over in Asia, South Korea showed with Squid Game that a South Korean series can reach more than 100M CVEs after 14 days, so why have we not seen big South Korean success in films? If a Norwegian film can reach 80M CVEs, surely a South Korean film could reach 50 or 60M CVEs.

Finally, India is an interesting case as Netflix has been pushing for Indian content whilst not having yet a huge success in its line-up of original films. That might change in the coming weeks or years.

Africa is a huge question mark, as *only* 32 Netflix Original films were released from this region. But 20M CVEs for its two biggest successes is not bad, considering that according to some reports, Netflix only had nearly 2M subscribers on the continent.

Most Watched Movies Us Canada Europe Asia Pacific

To dive deeper into the data, look at the Top 10 most-watched Netflix Original films from each zone. We’ll begin with the US and Canada, Europe, and Asia Pacific, the three biggest areas of success and output so far.

The most interesting thing from these three territories is that Troll, the most-watched international Netflix film with 80M CVEs, would not enter the UCAN top 10, which means there’s still a glass ceiling for international films. That glass ceiling might break as Netflix subscribers become increasingly international. In 2017, 58% of Netflix subs were from the US and Canada. In January 2024, that share was only 31%, meaning that less than a third of Netflix subs globally are from the US and Canada.

In Europe, Spain is nabbing four spots out of the Top 10, and they managed to do that with a recent addition in the form of the prestige film Society of the Snow.

Over in Asia Pacific, the English language is helping Australian films travel well. Still, South Korean films attract more and more viewers as the biggest South Korean title is also its latest, namely Badland Hunters.

Action and genre films are the most over-represented in those three regions groups.

Most Watched Movies Latin America Middle East Africa

Latin America released three times the number of films released by Africa or the Middle East, but that’s not helping them much. Their biggest success is only slightly better than the most-performing films from the Middle East and Africa. Brazil, Argentina, and Mexico are the three main territories.

In the Middle East, Turkey nabs all ten spots with its films, a sign that in this region, Netflix films from other countries don’t seem to travel or perhaps Turkish content translates better.

Finally, in Africa, South Africa and Nollywood are the only two territories to produce Netflix Original films as of now, the only exception being Trees of Peace from Rwanda. Netflix has not produced films in the Arab Maghreb (Morocco, Algeria, and Tunisia mainly), for instance, which seems like a geographical area where Netflix might invest in the future to gain a bigger foothold in the region.

A version of this post first appeared on the Netflix & Chiffres Substack.

What’s the most popular movie on Netflix from your country? Let us know in the comments.


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