Nagenda was a fast-rising Disney executive who’d spent over eight years at the Mouse House when he was brought over by Stuber as one of his early major hires. Nagenda was an important part in Stuber’s shift from steering a film studio whose inventory was made up largely of licensed/third-party films to one that developed projects in-house and secured star-driven packages and quickly turned them into big-budget films.
Netflix has been the most nominated studio at the Oscars three years running, and generates a film slate much bigger than any major rival studio. Given the recent rocky road the company has had in its stock price of late, that high number of annual productions will likely veer to a more selective strategy. I’m told that Nagenda, who oversaw a team that made The Gray Man and Extraction among others, was offered the opportunity to switch to a producing role. He instead chose to pursue other avenues. But his exit is amicable.
Said Stuber in confirming Nagenda’s exit: “Tendo joined the company four years ago and helped to build out our studio film team, who delivered movies such as The Harder They Fall, Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery, The Old Guard, Da 5 Bloods and Hustle. He was integral in our evolution from acquiring and licensing films to making movies ourselves. We wish him all the best for the future.”
Said Nagenda: “I’m honored to have been a small part of a film team that has led in Oscar nominations for three years in a row, become the biggest producer of film in the world by any metric, lead the industry through a pandemic, and become the standard bearer for representation and inclusion both in front of and behind the camera. I wish Netflix the continued tenacity and audacity to take the big swings and tell the big and beloved tales that need telling. I plan to.”
Deadline got a copy of an internal memo Nagenda just sent out to Netflix colleagues. Here is is:
It is with profound appreciation for the last four years and boundless optimism for the future of our business, that I sign off from my role at Netflix. I came to Netflix guided by a belief that too many poignant and transformative stories have gone untold. Alongside you, I have worked to help storytellers tell those stories and others with authenticity, dignity, and elevated entertainment value, and share them with a global audience that only Netflix can reach.
To borrow from James Baldwin, “you [tell stories] to change the world…the world changes according to the way people see it, and if you alter even by a millimeter, the way people look at reality, then you can change it.”
I’m honored to have been a small part of a film team that has led in Oscar nominations for three years in a row, become the biggest producer of film in the world by any metric, lead the industry through a pandemic, and become the standard bearer for representation and inclusion both in front of and behind the camera. In that pursuit of inclusion, I am especially proud of participating, with many courageous and selfless colleagues, in the creation of Strategy Bet #16: Big & Beloved Inclusive Content Across all of Netflix Entertainment. Together, through this work, we have altered reality by many millimeters and changed the world.
As the industry and world continue to shift, I wish each of you the continued tenacity and audacity to take the big swings and tell the big and beloved tales that need telling. I plan to.