Universal Pictures and HBO Extend Film Output Deal
Universal Pictures has renewed its domestic output deal with HBO, which will keep the studio's movies -- as well as those from Focus Features -- coming to the premium cable service for several more years.
Universal's relationship with HBO dates back to 2003. Its premium cable competitors have had an uneven track record on output deals. Netfix recently poached Disney from Starz; the studio's films will come to the streaming service in 2016. And Showtime largely got out of the output business, prefering to focus on original content instead.
The renewal of the agreement, which extends into the next decade, was announced Jan. 6 by Rick Finkelstein, vice chairman and COO of Universal Pictures, and Bruce Grivetti, president of film programming at HBO. The negotiations were led by Frances Manfredi, president of NBCUniversal cable and new media distribution, and Doris Casap, senior vp film programming at HBO.
“With HBO’s far-reaching network of premium services, ranging from the traditional in-home experience to its mobile applications, we are pleased to continue this relationship and bring Universal and Focus Features’ films to HBO subscribers for many years to come,” Finkelstein said in a statement. “With our upcoming slate of films, HBO will continue to offer outstanding film content to their already vast library of movies, specials and award-winning original programming.”
“We are very pleased to continue our strong partnership with HBO to bring Universal and Focus films to HBO's loyal subscriber base -- evidence of the continued strength of Pay TV,” added NBCU’s Manfredi.
“Through our long and successful partnership with Universal Pictures, HBO has been able to deliver some of the biggest and best Hollywood theatricals to our subscribers,” said HBO’s Grivetti. “We are excited to extend our relationship with Universal Pictures and have now solidified HBO's position for first-run theatricals into the next decade.”