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In a shot against pay-TV channels such as HBO and Showtime, Netflix announced today that it has signed a five-year-plus distribution deal with Relativity Media. The deal will allow Netflix to stream major motion pictures from Relativity ahead of traditional pay-TV channels, and is the first of its kind that Netflix has signed. Recent Relativity films include Dear John, MacGruber and The Spy Next Door.

Ted Sarandos, Netflix’s chief content officer, said the following about the deal:

“It would be my preference that the pay channels all supply us their films, but this is an example of the other way to get there, which is to compete with those guys,”

Ryan Kavanaugh, head of Relativity studios, offered the following:

“This is very similar to the kind of deal that gets made with HBO or Showtime, but it has characteristics that we feel make this a better all around structure,”

One of the “characteristics” that Kavanaugh lauds may be the fact that, unlike most pay channel deals, Relativity will continue to be allowed to rent and sell its movies digitally and through gaming consoles.

Will this pact open the floodgates for similar deals between content creators and distributors? Relativity is not the biggest player in town, but could a larger studio take note of this deal and be the next to ink a distribution agreement with Netflix?

(via the L.A. Times)

5 Responses to “Netflix Signs Distribution Deal with Relativity Media”

  1. Member [Join Now]

    But MacGruber is a Universal film, meaning that one will take a while to appear on Netflix (once it comes out on dvd)

    • Visitor [Join Now]
      John Small [visitor]

      Universal only had the theatrical distribution rights for the USA. Relativity retained the distribution rights for the remaining channels.

  2. Visitor [Join Now]
    missy [visitor]

    I would cancel if they went above 10.00 (one dvd) because I get 2 movies per week. It would not be worth OVER 10.00 for 8 movies (I’ve seen most I want to see at this point but keep it around for the new releases on tuesday. And a lot of them are behind. I hear talk- I’d also cancel if the mail shut down on Saturday. I would not pay 10.00 for 4 or 5 movies. I watch a movie every Tuesday and Friday. I can rent from redbox or blockbuster for 1.00 each day, but think it’s cool to know what I’ll watch. If the quality was better and selection than I’d keep if the mail shut down on Saturdays. But they are movies I’ve seen, old, or movies that do not interest me. I watch the old ones tho. Alot of them are really dumb.