Netflix scores exclusive deal with DreamWorks Animation

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Score one for Netflix. After weeks of being dragged through the mud for its controversial fee hikes and service splitting, the folks behind the red envelopes have secured exclusive first-run rights for all DreamWorks Animation features. “DreamWorks Animation is one of the few family entertainment brands that really matters,” said Ted Sarandos, Chief Content Officer of Netflix. “This agreement strengthens the lineup of great family content Netflix members will be able to watch instantly and also increases the number of hit first-run films we’ll have available in the pay TV window.”

Though the plan won’t kick in until the release of DreamWorks’ 2013 feature films, other titles from the DreamWorks catalog will become available over time. No financial terms have been released concerning the deal, which marks a shift in the industry — it’s the first time a studio has ever given first-run rights to a streaming web application over a television provider. So what does this mean for the rest of the companies who’ve recently joined in the Netflix onslaught?

This wouldn’t be a Netflix story without an offensive maneuver from at least another company. Amazon was quick to respond to Netflix’s coup by announcing a streaming partnership with Fox that pulls in 2,000 films and TV shows to the online giant’s Amazon Prime service. This means shows like The X-Files, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, 24, Arrested Development, and The Wonder Years (an Amazon exclusive) will join the Prime line-up. Amazon chief Jeff Bezos said these additions are just a continuation of the brand’s expansion: “Since launching earlier this year, we have now doubled the number of titles available in Prime instant videos, and there’s still more to come.” Other services are also nipping at Netflix’s heels, including Apple, Walmart-owned Vudu, and Dish Network, which recently announced a new partnership with Blockbuster.

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Comments (79 total) Add your comment
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  • john

    Say what you will about Netflix, it’s still a great deal for just 7.99 a month. Looking forward to them continuing to add to their streaming library.

    • Jay

      Nope.

  • PDDB

    “Though the plan won’t kick in until the release of DreamWorks’ 2013 feature films, other titles from the DreamWorks catalog will become available over time.”

    I am confused. The plan (meaning making Dreamworks content available in Netflix) won’t kick in until 2013? Or will Dreamworks content be made available over time starting now? Or will this happen after 2013?

    • Monty

      Starting in 2013, films released by dreamworks animation will be first made exclusivly available for viewing on netflix. Between then and now, previously released dreamworks movies will be added to Netflix’s library.

  • jigsaw

    Forget dreamworks, get starz back.

    • Trish

      Completely agree! Was so mad when the started removing their movies and series

  • Zak

    I’m missing something. How is this a victory? Most of Dreamworks Animation movies, with exception of How To Train Your Dragon, tend to be rather mediocre.

    • Felix

      They also tend to make bazillions of dollars.

      • Matt

        It depends. Is Dreamworks Kung Fu Panda and Monsters Vs Aliens? Caus they are great movies. Throw in Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs and I’m freakin’ sold.

    • Jay

      It would be exciting if it was Dreamworks in general, not just Dreamworks animation.

      • Kevin7

        My thoughts exactly. If this was about the entire Dreamworks catalog it would be news.

      • Alex

        Not gonna happen. Showtime has the rights to the Touchstone distributed live action Dreamworks movies.

  • LOL

    America Loves Crap

  • Laura – Chicago

    TVDevo is better than Netflix and they don’t charge monthly fees for it.

  • Darrin

    Is this supposed to make anyone want to keep their Netflix subscription? Even if Dreamworks Animation somehow put out 2 whole movies a year starting in 2013, and added the dozen or so in their current catalog, that’s still not much to shout about.

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