Cannes: FilmNation Strikes Output Deal With Chinese Streamer iQiyi

Cannes Critics Week - Wildlife - Publicity - H 2018
Courtesy of Cannes

The deal will bring the indie producer's titles to the massive Chinese online market for a three-year period.

Influential independent film company FilmNation Entertainment has struck an output deal with Chinese video streaming giant iQiyi.

The agreement, unveiled Wednesday at the Cannes Film Market, gives the streamer exclusive VOD rights to FilmNation’s content for a three-year period.

“More Chinese movie fans than ever before will be able to experience many of the best independent films from some of the world’s most exciting directors,” said FilmNation’s Rob Carney.

“Following on the heels of our strategic cooperation agreements with entertainment companies such as Fox, Disney, Sony and Netflix, this exclusive partnership with FilmNation represents the next step of iQiyi bringing subscriber members an ever-more international selection of high-quality content,” said Yang Xianghua, senior vp iQiyi.

Founded in 2008, FilmNation specializes in producing, financing and distributing independent films; past hits include Denis Villeneuve multi-Oscar nominee Arrival and critically acclaimed dramedy The Big Sick. IQiyi, which listed on the Nasdaq stock exchange last month, is China's preeminent streaming video service, commonly likened to a Sino Netflix.

Both iQiyi and FilmNation have projects in Cannes this year. The Chinese company is making its festival debut with director Zhang Ming's The Pluto Moment, premiering in the festival's Directors’ Fortnight section. FilmNation has Paul Dano's directorial debut, Wildlife, opening Critics’ Week.

A version of this story appears in The Hollywood Reporter's May 10 daily issue from the Cannes Film Festival.