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Netflix Grabs Sony's Pay-TV Movie Deal From Starz

By Anders Bylund - Updated Apr 9, 2021 at 10:55AM

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Most Hollywood studios have started their own streaming services to compete in the evolving media market. Sony picked a well-established partner instead.

Video-streaming veteran Netflix (NFLX 3.29%) just signed a multiyear content deal with Sony (SONY -0.89%) Pictures Entertainment. Starting in 2022, Sony will move its exclusive pay-TV distribution window from longtime partner Starz to Netflix, putting the studio's theatrical releases on Netflix's global streaming platform.

Sony and Netflix already had a streaming agreement for animated content, but this deal expands that partnership to all genres and production types. Titles making their home entertainment premiere in 2022 on Netflix rather than Lions Gate Entertainment (LGF-A -2.57%) (LGF-B -3.41%) subsidiary Starz will include the Brad Pitt thriller Bullet Train, the ensemble-cast action movie Uncharted, and the Reese Witherspoon-produced murder drama Where the Crawdads Sing.

Two businessmen shake hands in front of a wall of TV screens showing various media content.

Image source: Getty Images.

Netflix will also distribute future titles in Sony's established film franchises such as Venom, Jumanji, and Bad Boys, as well as any other new projects that Sony's several studio brands may come up with. The deal also allows licensing rights for Netflix to show some titles from Sony's enormous back catalog.

Furthermore, Netflix gets "first look" privilege to consider developing any direct-to-streaming titles Sony's studios may develop during this agreement. Netflix has committed to releasing an undisclosed minimum number of such productions, which will add exclusive Sony/Netflix content on top of Sony's continuing theatrical productions.

The terms of the deal were not disclosed, but Netflix's payments to Sony should be "record setting" for a pay-TV distribution window, according to Variety's anonymous insider sources.

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Stocks Mentioned

Netflix, Inc. Stock Quote
Netflix, Inc.
$185.88 (3.29%) $5.93
Sony Corporation Stock Quote
Sony Corporation
$80.95 (-0.89%) $0.73
Lions Gate Entertainment Corp. Stock Quote
Lions Gate Entertainment Corp.
$8.71 (-2.57%) $0.23
Lions Gate Entertainment Corp. Stock Quote
Lions Gate Entertainment Corp.
$8.22 (-3.41%) $0.29

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