updated 08:30 am EDT, Tue August 10, 2010
Netflix to stream Epix movies 90 days after debut
Netflix today scored a coup for the Internet side of its service as it reached a deal to stream Epix pay TV movies. The movie rental outlet will have access to major Lionsgate, MGM and Paramount movies 90 days after they first air on TV and online. Although not the same as a simultaneous release, Netflix considered it a victory given traditional pay TV limits: some movies are locked into such services for as long as nine years, the company said.
Movies should arrive September 1.
The deal follows similar deals with Relativity Media and Warner Bros. last month, and reflects a mounting effort by Netflix to flesh out its still small streaming catalog. It has wide access to physical Blu-ray and DVD titles but often has just a fraction of that online due to licensing agreements.
Some of the deficit has come from hesitation by traditional movie and TV studios. These have often insisted on a buffer period, even for physical rentals, as they have wanted to protect their dying but still important disc sales and pay-per-view TV deals.