Netflix closes in on securing a deal for a Six Nations series
14th December 2022

EXCLUSIVE: Netflix closes in on securing a deal for a Six Nations series off the back of the success of F1’s Drive to Survive – with filming set to begin at the upcoming 2023 Championship as rugby looks to boost its popularity

  • The primary objective of the series is growing rugby’s appeal around the world
  • Six Nations is rugby’s biggest annual tournament and has looked to modernise
  • It comes after Premiership clubs Worcester and Wasps went out of business 

A behind-the-scenes Six Nations series is set to come to Netflix next year, with talks between the two parties at an advanced stage as rugby looks to emulate Formula One’s success with the online streaming platform.

Netflix found major success with Drive To Survive – a fly-on-the-wall series following Formula One drivers, managers and team owners which first aired in 2019 and saw the sport’s popularity rise significantly.

And Sportsmail understands Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff and driver George Russell have taken part in Zoom meetings with rugby players, coaches and chief executives to discuss how Netflix has revolutionised their sport’s commercial appeal.

Champions are France set to feature in a behind-the-scenes Six Nations series on Netflix

Mercedes’ positive report is particularly significant given they refused to take part in the first series of Drive To Survive, which is now preparing for its fifth edition.

During a season in which two Premiership clubs in Worcester and Wasps have gone out of business and the sport is struggling for popularity worldwide, rugby’s authorities know they need to act.

The Six Nations is rugby’s biggest annual tournament and has looked to modernise in a number of ways this year already.

Series could feature the return of Warren Gatland as Wales boss and a new England coach

A Netflix series going behind the scenes at each of the six competing nations – England, Wales, Scotland, Ireland, France and Italy – is being seen as a must if rugby is to stay relevant and compete with its rivals.

CVC Capital Partners, who bought a 14.3 per cent stake in the Six Nations worth £365million in 2021 and who were previously involved in F1, are one of the main driving forces behind it.

But rather than focusing on pure financial profit, the primary objective of the Six Nations Netflix series is growing rugby’s appeal not just in Europe, but around the world.

The Drive To Survive series first aired in 2019 and saw the popularity of F1 rise significantly 

The chief executives of the six unions involved have already given their backing to filming taking place in their respective camps at next year’s championship.

But talks with the players and coaches, primarily focusing on access levels, are continuing, which is where Wolff and Russell – Lewis Hamilton’s team-mate – recently came in.

Netflix and the Six Nations are yet to officially confirm their partnership but are expected to do so early next year, with northern hemisphere rugby ready to take a positive step and join the multitude of other sports who have already produced a documentary series.

There should be plenty for the Netflix cameras to get their teeth into with England set to have a new head coach in Steve Borthwick for the start of the tournament while Warren Gatland has also made a dramatic return as Wales boss.

Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff (above) and driver George Russell have offered advice




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