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Netflix to broadcast first-ever Welsh language TV show

19 Jan 2023 3 minute read
Dal y Mellt stars Mark Lewis Jones (left) and Gwïon Morris Jones (right) (Credit: S4C)

In a major first for Welsh language media, Netflix has acquired an S4C title for global distribution.

The streaming serviced announced it intended to broadcast one of S4C’s series – Dal y Mellt, in April.

Dal Y Mellt follows the troubles of the main character Carbo as he is drawn into a world of evil, lies, secrets and heartbreak. The series begins in the dark back streets of Cardiff and then moves back and forth between Cardiff, Soho, Porthmadog and Holyhead.

The series was released as a Box Set on S4C Clic and BBC iPlayer in the Autumn.

Benjamin King, Netflix’s Director of Public Policy in the United Kingdom and Ireland, gave evidence before the Welsh Affairs Committee yesterday and labelled Wales a ‘success story’ in the industry.

He said that many of their most successful programmes were created in Wales, because “extremely culturally specific” programmes were popular with viewers.

“We can play a supporting role in promoting and preserving the Welsh language,” he said.

“That is why we have decided to license content in the Welsh language. We have subtitles in the Welsh language on some films.

“One episode of The Crown is almost entirely in Welsh.

“We don’t want to compete directly with S4C which has the specific task of producing content in the Welsh language.

“But we can be of assistance in promoting it and helping it reach a wider audience.”

Red Notice subtitle options on Netflix

More recently, the streaming service has made Welsh subtitles available on certain films such as The Adam Project and Red Notice, because of lead actor Ryan Reynolds’ connection as the new co-owner of Wrexham AFC, with the sports documentary ‘Welcome To Wrexham’ released on Disney+ in 2022.

According to Ofcom, 74% of viewers over the age of 13 watched Netflix in 2022, making it the most popular video-on-demand service in Wales.

S4C Chief Executive Siân Doyle said: “This is great news for drama in the Welsh language. The popularity of international dramas on Netflix worldwide proves the desire for exciting quality drama whatever the language. Dal y Mellt is a testament to the quality of talent that produces drama in Wales.

“Selling a monolingual Welsh language series to a major global streamer such as Netflix sets our ambition to take talent and the Welsh language to the world and creates further exciting opportunities for S4C.

“Our Welsh plays stand alongside those of the rest of the world. S4C has a long history of selling plays that are co-productions – Y Gwyll (Hinterland), Un Bore Mercher (Keeping Faith) and Y Golau (Light in the Hall). They are all back-to-back bilingual (English/Welsh) productions that sell to international broadcasters and streaming platforms.”


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Dyfan Roberts
Dyfan Roberts
11 days ago

Llongyfarchiadau i S4C a’r Cwmni Cynhyrchu. Ffilmiau a dramau Cymraeg i’r Byd!

Riki
Riki
11 days ago

Should be called British, not Welsh. It isn’t foreign to this Island. Unlike that I’m currently writing in.

Riki
Riki
11 days ago
Reply to  Riki

dislikes,..ha! it’s seems as thou some people don’t even know their own countries history.

Last edited 11 days ago by Riki
Cawr
Cawr
11 days ago
Reply to  Riki

So bad it’s obviously a parody

Last edited 11 days ago by Cawr
David Harking
David Harking
11 days ago
Reply to  Riki

Yes we do. But British means England nowadays – the meaning of words can change. Keep your stinking Britain.

Riki
Riki
10 days ago
Reply to  David Harking

That’s called capitulation my friend. Are you willing to throw away 2000 years worth of British history that belongs to Wales along with that title? Worse still, it allows the English to claim it all as their own! They already Claim, if King Arthur existed he must have been English, how much more do you want them see steal? People like you play right into their hands! Without even realising it.

Last edited 10 days ago by Riki
Igw
Igw
11 days ago

Mor falch o glywed hyn! Dal y Mellt yn wych o raglen

Iago
Iago
11 days ago

Netflix is showing more support for the Welsh language than the Anglo-Welsh media. It’s shameful that foreigners are more supportive of the language than a lot of Welsh people.

Riki
Riki
10 days ago
Reply to  Iago

Anglo, an ancient name for the English. It should be either 1. Welsh-English or 2. British-Anglo…why use a modern English name for the British, but the ancient name for the English?

Rhosddu
Rhosddu
7 days ago

Dal y Mellt was a quality drama and well acted. It’s a good choice for introducing Welsh TV to a world-wide audience.

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