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Netflix Secures Streaming Deal with FilmDistrict

Netflix said Wednesday that it will have the rights to stream movies from recently created FilmDistrict shortly after they are released on DVD and before they go to pay TV.

The deal, while small, provides more evidence that Netflix is focused on eventually making its streaming business a competitor to the entrenched providers of movies through satellite and cable TV connections.

FilmDistrict is the company founded by Graham King, the Oscar-winning producer of The Departed and Blood Diamond, which are two of most popular movies among Netflix subscribers.

FilmDistrict is run by CEO Peter Schlessel along with president of film distribution Bob Berney and president of acquisitions and operations Adrian Alperovich.

Two films under the Netflix arrangement are Drive and Lockout.

Drive, about a Hollywood stuntman who discovers he has been targeted for murder, stars Ryan Gosling, Carey Mulligan and Ron Perlman and is due in theaters in 2011.

Lockout, a futuristic tale about an ex-convict on a mission to save the president's daughter, is due in 2012 and stars Guy Pearce and Maggie Grace.