Monday, 7 January 2013
Netflix Secures Deal With Warner Bros. for Slate of New TV Shows
Just over two weeks have passed since Netflix experienced an embarrassing Christmas Eveservice outage that quickly illustrated some of the potential downsides of relying on getting your entertainment from the cloud.
Nevertheless, the company is forging ahead into the New Year aggressively, announcing a new deal with Warner Bros. involving some of the studio's top-tier content. The deal will allow Netflix to offer eight shows from the studio's stable of content including popular series such asRevolution and 666 Park Avenue, new shows starring Kevin Bacon (The Following) and Sigourney Weaver (Political Animals), as well as established hits Fringe and The West Wing.
"This unprecedented agreement brings to Netflix members earlier and more exclusively than ever before complete previous seasons of some of the most prominent and successful shows on network and cable television," Netflix chief content officer, Ted Sarandos, said in a statement. "Through deals like this, Netflix is making the production economics right for the continued creation of the kind of compelling serialized dramas and thrillers that our members love."
Drawing the support of major television and film studios is seen as vital to the future of Netflix's streaming media business model, but in recent months the company has experienced increasing competition from the likes of Hulu, Amazon, HBO GO, and Redbox. In fact, HBO this weekend announced a deal with Universal that will extend the network's exclusive access to the studio's films for the next 10 years, a move that could serve to hinder Netflix's expansion over the long term.
Despite the setback, Netflix remains firmly in the streaming video hunt, having signed a major three-year exclusive streaming content deal with Disney last month. That deal, set to begin in 2016, is seen by some in Hollywood as a major move that could ultimately save the online rental giant. However, rather than simply rely on legacy content from the old school studio players, Netflix recently moved forward with its own slate of programming including the cult hit Lilyhammer and the Kevin Spacey drama House of Cards.
Monetary terms of this latest deal were not disclosed, but Warner Bros. president Bruce Rosenblum did weigh in on the Netflix statement. "We continue to adapt our business models to include SVOD [subscription video on demand] when it makes sense for the long-term value of each show and are thrilled to have Netflix as one of our distribution partners," he said.