Russian Films Cut From Hulu (Report)
U.S. disributor Gravitas Ventures terminated the deal, blaming poor financial returns.
Russian movies are no longer available on Hulu.
U.S distributor Gravitas Ventures terminated its contract with Russia's Roskino a year early, citing poor financial performance as the reason. Roskino said politics played a part, with U.S. sanctions against Russia an important factor.
"Despite some apparent successes of individual films available on Hulu, the deal wasn't satisfactory enough for Gravitas Ventures," Yekaterina Mtsituridze, head of Roskino, was quoted as saying by Rambler News.
Mtisituridze suggested that their films proved to be "too difficult" for an average American viewer. She added that U.S. sanctions slapped on Russia last year following the annexation of Crimea could have also been a factor.
Hulu and Gravitas didn't respond to The Hollywood Reporter's request for comment.
Signed in 2012, the contract between Roskino and Gravitas was set to expire in 2016 and stipulated distribution on Hulu of nine Russian titles. One of the films, Alexei Andrianov's thriller Shpion (Spy) even made Hulu's top 20 at one point, but the rest of the package included mostly art house films with esoteric appeal.
Following the termination of the deal, no Russian theatrical movies are now available on Hulu, although a few TV shows are still in the library. TV shows Molodezhka (Junior League) and Ranetki are still available under a deal with Russian broadcaster CTC Media, brokered by Roskino and content aggregator Digital Media Rights.