MGM Signs With Netflix for Exclusive Streaming in U.K., Ireland

Netflix - Computer Screen - h - 2011
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When subscription service goes live in 2012, British and Irish members will have access to most first-run feature films from the studio.

Just two weeks after making plans to enter the market official, Netflix announced a multi-year licensing agreement Monday that makes it the exclusive subscription streaming service of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios Inc. in the U.K. and Ireland.

Under the partnership, most first-run feature films from MGM, as well as features from its distribution partners, will be part of the steaming library when Netflix launches for members in the UK and Ireland in early 2012.

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‘We are delighted to be entering the U.K. and Ireland with a legendary studio like MGM at our side,” said Netflix chief content officer Ted Sarandos. “And we are excited to be extending our relationship with MGM from the U.S. to these important markets and proud to be the exclusive home for their films in the traditional Pay TV window.”

MGM titles Netflix says it will offer within a year of local theatrical release include The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey and The Hobbit: There and Back Again, Zookeeper, Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters and 21 Jump Street.

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When Netflix announced the leg of the European expansion in October, it noted that most details about the service, pricing and supported devices would come closer to the launch.

Netflix's U.S. subscriber base recently suffered a 800,000-member loss after a brief experiment in separating streaming and DVD-by-mail businesses, causing its stock to drop precipitously.