updated 09:35 pm EDT, Fri March 25, 2011
Netflix tipped near 100m Miramax deal
Tips on Friday had Netflix near a major deal that would give it access to all of Miramax's movies. An agreement that would be "well north of" $100 million would allow streaming for the next five years. The Reuters tip had few other details but was supported by a WSJ rumor corroborating similar terms.
The deal would come just after similar talk of a Google deal with Miramax for its publicly known plans to expand YouTube into a major movie service. Filmyard, the investor firm that bought Miramax from Disney in 2010, has been keen to rapidly make back its $660 million and could see digital deals as a quick way to recoup the cost.
None of the involved companies agreed to comment.
A deal of the sort could give Netflix uncommon access to top tier movies that studios often withhold, including Tarantino movies like Pulp Fiction and the Kill Bill series as well as the Coen brothers' No Country for Old Men. Major movie producers often hope that withdrawing support will steer viewers towards more lucrative per-title purchases and rentals at iTunes or similar outlets.
Netflix has lately been taking drastic steps to guarantee a good catalog for its Internet streaming. Most of its deals have usually involved agreeing to a delay in access in return for a wider catalog, but it just last week bought a major TV series, House of Cards, before it had even aired in its first shot at owning original content.
Studios themselves have grown increasingly nervous around Netflix through its dominant market share to the point where existing partners are negotiating less powerful deals. CBS quickly stopped its plans to offer TV shows just days after they aired, and long-time partner Starz backed off by requiring a 90-day wait for new video instead of the next-day strategy it had before.