U.K. VOD Service Inks Deal for Bond Franchise


Footage of a Chinese character dying, and references to prostitution and torture were edited out of the Chinese release of the 2012 James Bond film. One scene completely cut included a hitman (Ola Rapace) killing a Chinese security guard. In another, Bond (Daniel Craig) questions a woman (Berenice Marlohe) about her tattoo, which indicates she had been forced into prostitution as a child. The audio was kept in, but the subtitles instead read she was being extorted by the mob. When Javier Bardem’s Raoul Silva tells Bond about being captured in Hong Kong and then tortured, the subtitles did not tell the whole tale.

Owned by the world's third largest retailer Tesco, blinkbox will offer the BAFTA-winning Daniel Craig instalment as well as the other 22 titles from Feb. 18. to rent or buy.

LONDON – Blinkbox, the VOD service owned by British retail giant Tesco, has inked a deal with Metro Goldwyn Mayer Studios Inc for the entire James Bond film catalog, including the latest installment, Skyfall, starring Daniel Craig.

All eyes will be on the battle for consumers as blinkbox said it will make the British Academy best British film 2013 winner available from Feb. 18 to rent or buy, the same day it begins to ship physical copies from online retailer Amazon's warehouses.

Skyfall is the most successful Bond film of all time, grossing over $1 billion at the worldwide box office.

The other 22 films in the Bond franchise will be available to buy via blinkbox, the company said.

The blinkbox deal with MGM also includes around 100 other titles, such as the Rocky and Robocop films, and classics including The Magnificent Seven, The Silence of the Lambs and The Great Escape.

As with all blinkbox titles, the movies can be accessed on tablets, games consoles and Smart devices (TVs, Blu-Ray players, set top boxes) as well as PCs and Macs.

Tesco Digital Entertainment CEO Michael Comish said: "007 has a special place in our hearts at blinkbox – he loves a gadget and he has moved with the times."

Chris Ottinger, president, international television distribution & acquisitions, MGM said his company is "always looking for opportunities to bring our world-class library to new global audiences."

Ottinger added: "We are delighted to share the legendary James Bond franchise with Tesco’s blinkbox viewers across multiple platforms for James Bond’s 50th Anniversary."

Blinkbox is the only service in the U.K. that boasts such a huge choice of the latest movies and TV releases without consumers having to be locked into a subscription.