Posted on Monday, April 21st, 2008 by Peter Sciretta
Viacom, MGM and Lionsgate have teamed for a new, yet-to-be-named, cable pay-channel which hopes to compete with HBO, Showtime and Starz. Showtime previously had a deal with Viacom to air their new films, but the money was not enough.
Here are the details direct from the press release: The new venture will have access to Paramount and Paramount Vantage titles released theatrically on or after January 1, 2008 and MGM, United Artists and Lionsgate titles released theatrically on or after January 1, 2009. This includes such films as Iron Man, Star Trek, Pink Panther 2, Cloverfield, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, Shutter Island, GI Joe, Love Guru, and Valkyrie. In addition, the new venture will have access to motion picture titles spanning the vast libraries of the five studios, which libraries include Braveheart, Forrest Gump and the Mission: Impossible, The Godfather and Star Trek franchises from Paramount; the James Bond, Pink Panther and Rocky franchises from MGM; and Dirty Dancing, Reservoir Dogs, Crash, Monster’s Ball, the Saw franchise, the Tyler Perry catalogue and The Blair Witch Project from Lionsgate. The new venture will also feature new original television series created by the five studios.
Basically this is this is just the beginning. I’ve been predicting that this will happen for years now. With the future push for on demand, it makes complete sense for film studios to be in control of their own offerings, and charging a monthly all-you-can-eat price for their libraries. Now, this announcement doesn’t say anything about on demand, but this is clearly the way of the future. One day we’ll be able to subscribe to movie studios, instead of premium channels, and watch any movie in their entire library. It only makes sense.
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