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The deal is similar to the pact CBS struck with last summer’s hit limited series Under the Dome, episodes of which were also exclusively available to Amazon Prime subscribers for streaming four days after they aired. The first season of Under the Dome, which was a ratings hit for CBS, was also watched by more customers than any other TV season on Prime Instant Video this year, according to Amazon. CBS and Amazon recently renewed their Under the Dome deal for the show’s second season.
With Dome, CBS’ deal with Amazon helped the network offset the cost of launching a pricey serialized original drama in the typically low-rated summer months.
“Our partnership with Amazon for Under the Dome helped build a creative, financial and marketing model for event television in the summer,” CBS’ chief corporate licensing officer Scott Koondel said in a statement. “We look forward to using the same model for Extant, a series whose creative auspices, on-screen talent and intriguing concept is already generating great excitement.”
Amazon director of content acquisition for digital video Brad Beale added: “We received very positive feedback from Prime members about this summer’s exclusive access to Under the Dome. Customers loved being able to watch the show just days after it aired as well as catching up on previous episodes. We are thrilled to offer Prime members this access for Extant, another exciting new show from CBS.”
Extant, which like Dome is produced by Steven Spielberg‘s Amblin Television, will premiere on CBS in June. The futuristic mystery thriller focuses on a female astronaut (Berry) trying to reconnect with her family after she returns from a year in outer space. Her experiences lead to events that will change the course of human history. The show was at the center of a heated bidding war between broadcast and cable networks with CBS ultimately emerging victorious by committing to a 13-episode straight-to-series order. It was announced that Berry would star in the series in October.
Amazon Prime members will be able to stream episodes of Extant on all compatible devices and the episodes will be available for purchase and download exclusively on Amazon Instant Video.
The deal is the latest salvo in an ongoing battle between Amazon, Netflix and Hulu to attract subscribers via exclusive streaming deals. The streaming services also all have original series.
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