Netflix Makes Deal With Sony For Rights to Show Animated FIlms

Posted by at 9:44 am on May 27, 2014

Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2Netflix has reached a multiyear deal with Sony Pictures Television for U.S. pay-TV window rights to the studio’s animated films, starting with “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2,” while Sony’s other feature films will remain with Starz through at least 2021.

Starz renewed its output deal with Sony last year and under that agreement, the premium cabler agreed to carve out the animated films for distribution to another platform. Starz remains the exclusive pay-TV home of Sony Pictures Entertainment feature titles through 2021, the companies said.

Netflix’s addition of “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2″ to its streaming service was pointed out in a research note by Janney Capital Markets analyst Tony Wible. The development is “an incremental positive for Netflix and incremental negative for Starz,” he wrote, because his assumption had been Starz would have rights to the animated features until the new output deal with Sony commenced in 2016.

Sony Animation Pictures’ “Smurfs 2″ will be added to the Netflix SVOD service later in 2014. Starz retains rights to previous Sony animated pics, including “Hotel Transylvania” (which debuted on Starz in May 2013 and is currently in rotation on the programmer’s Encore services).

The studio’s upcoming animation slate includes a third as-yet-untitled Smurfs movie, expected in theaters August 2015; “Hotel Transylvania 2,” scheduled for September 2015; and a CG version of “Popeye.”

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