For a film about keeping your eyes closed, a lot of people sure have seen Netflix's post-apocalyptic thriller Bird Box. Despite its mixed critical response, the Sandra Bullock-starring film instantly became a viral sensation when it released on Dec. 21. In a very surprising move, Netflix has decided to share the first-week numbers for Bird Box, saying that over 45 million users around the world have already watched the movie.
Considering how many people share their accounts or often watch Netflix with company, that means that the viewership of Bird Box is undoubtedly even higher than their reported number suggests. Netflix aren't known for sharing statistics regarding their original programming and films, but it's clear that Bird Box is a notable exception considering it's just become the best opening week for any Netflix original feature-length.
Unfortunately, the 45 million number cannot be independently verified, as Nielsen has attempted to estimate the metrics for Netflix content in the past although their metrics have always been limited in scope due to lack of access. Bird Box was given a short one-week theatrical run earlier in the month by Netflix, but the buzz around it didn't kick off until the holiday period, during which it became a trending topic and inspired a few memes.