Netflix has unveiled a new custom typeface to be used across the streaming platform’s brand identity, developed by the in-house design team in partnership with foundry Dalton Maag. According to Netflix brand design lead Noah Nathan, the move away from Gotham and to creating a bespoke font was driven by escalating costs and the ability to make the identity more “ownable”.
“With the global nature of Netflix’s business, font licensing can get quite expensive,” Noah says. "Developing this typeface [also] created an ownable and unique element for the brand’s aesthetic.”
The typeface was created with both display aesthetics and more pragmatic functionality in mind, the uppercase proportions designed to appear “cinematic” and the lowercase proportions “compact and efficient”. Noah describes the letterforms as clean and neutral, “an approachable geometric grotesque”, eliminating excess and “favouring art over distraction”. The arched cut on the lowercase “t” is apparently inspired by the “cinemascopic curve” of the brand’s wordmark. Netflix Sans comes in different weights including regular, light, thin, medium, bold and black.
Noah was joint design lead with Tanya Kumar, working with Andre do Amaral, David Gallagher and Monique Adcock, and the team at Dalton Maag.
Update 23 March: An earlier version of this article quoted the designer as to the costs saved by using a bespoke font. We are currently seeking clarification on this statement.