Sky and Warner Bros. Announce Comprehensive New Movie Agreement
Sky and Warner Bros. today announce details of a comprehensive film agreement that will see the two companies collaborate on the distribution of Warner Bros.' movies across a wide range of platforms and aim to work more closely on the release and marketing of films in the UK and Ireland.
The new distribution agreements span the first subscription pay TV and pay-per-view windows, enabling Sky to exhibit Warner Bros.' titles on its Sky Movies channels and video-on-demand services, and on a pay-per-view basis via Sky Movies Box Office and Sky Store. This means that subscribers to Sky Movies, and customers of NOW TV, the new internet TV service powered by Sky, will enjoy exclusive access to Warner Bros.' new releases around six months after they have ended their run in cinemas. Once on Sky Movies, these films will be available on the service exclusively for more than a year.
Under the terms of the new agreement, Sky Movies will be the first subscription service in the UK & Ireland to show current Warner Bros. movies such as the UK-produced pictures Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows, The Dark Knight Rises, Dark Shadows and Wrath of the Titans, as well future releases such as Man of Steel, The Hangover Part III and The Great Gatsby.
Alongside these brand new films, Sky Movies customers will also have exclusive access to a wide range of classic titles from Warner Bros.' world-class back catalogue, including all Batman movies, The Matrix franchise, The Lord of the Rings trilogy, all Superman movies and Lethal Weapon 1, 2 and 3.
All of the movies will be available whenever and wherever Sky Movies customers want to watch, via 11 dedicated Sky Movies channels, Sky's comprehensive TV on-demand service and Sky Go, the award-winning multiplatform TV service. For Sky Movies customers, the movies will be provided in HD and 3D, device and title-permitting.
The full suite of Warner Bros. titles will also be available to NOW TV customers with the Sky Movies monthly pass. NOW TV offers easy and flexible access to Sky Movies across PC, Mac, iPhone, iPad, YouView, Xbox and selected Android smart phones, with films available to stream instantly. Customers who subscribe to Sky Movies via Virgin Media, UPC and TalkTalk will also be able to enjoy the full range of subscription films from the Warner Bros.' collection.
In addition, prior to their availability on Sky's subscription services, Sky customers will be able to rent on a non-exclusive basis a wide range of Warner Bros. titles through Sky Movies Box Office, which is available to all Sky TV homes, Sky Store and NOW TV. Through these services, all Sky customers can rent Warner Bros.' titles - from the latest movies at the same time as they become available on DVD, through to an extensive library of classic films.
The two companies, meanwhile, have a long history of working together to market films innovatively, most notably on the premiere of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2, which saw Sky host live 3D footage on air, and in regional cinemas across the country, as well as a produce a Premiere Special on Sky 1 and Sky Movies in the days that followed the record-breaking event in Trafalgar Square. This pact also signals an ambition to continue working inthis way in the future.
Ian Lewis, Director of Sky Movies says: "We are delighted to be renewing our partnership with Warner Bros. This new deal will give Sky Movies customers exclusive access to the full range of Warner Bros.' films, including recent hits like The Dark Knight Rises and classic titles such as The Lord of the Rings trilogy, reflecting our focus on offering the biggest choice of the best films. By making the films available on demand and on our multiplatform service Sky Go, Sky is strengthening the customer experience, offering customers greater value and flexibility. The deal also sees us extend our reach by offering the films on NOW TV and Sky Store, giving more people new ways to enjoy our fantastic content."
Josh Berger CBE, President & Managing Director, Warner Bros. UK, Ireland & Spain comments: "As the UK television and digital landscape continues to evolve, we're thrilled to be partnering with Sky to deliver our market-leading motion picture slate to millions of subscribers across multiple platforms. This innovative and ambitious deal presents consumers with myriad ways to enjoy our films, many of which will have been produced here in the UK, and we look forward to working with Sky as it continues to invest in great content."
Jeffrey R. Schlesinger, President, Warner Bros. International Television Distribution adds: "We are pleased to extend our association with Sky in the UK and Ireland. In an increasingly competitive environment for high quality features, we have once again selected Sky as the best home for our films in the first pay window. Sky Movies subscribers can look forward to seeing Warner Bros.' new films created by some of Hollywood's most talented directors and stars on Sky's platform in more compelling and convenient ways."
Sky entertains and excites customers in more than 10.3 million homes through the most comprehensive multichannel, multi-platform television service in the UK and Ireland. Sky continues to break new ground with its own portfolio of channels: Sky 1 combines its commitment to UK production with the best of the US; Sky Living pushes ahead with fresh and innovative entertainment formats; Sky Arts is the UK's only dedicated arts and entertainment channels; Sky Atlantic is the home to HBO and other iconic drama and comedy, Sky Sports is still raising the bar in sports broadcasting; SkyNews remains a pioneer in television news; and Sky Movies is leading the way in High Definition and on demand.
Sky also works with dozens of other broadcasters on the satellite platform, as well as online and on mobile through the ground-breaking, multiplatform TV service Sky. In addition, Sky has led the UK into the age of high definition television, launched Europe's first 3DTVchannel, Sky 3D, and offers customers even more flexibility and choice through Sky Anytime+, its internet-delivered video on demand service. Since launching Sky Broadband and Sky Talk in 2006, the company has also been the UK's fastest-growing home communications provider.
Sky believes in making a wider contribution to the communities in which it operates, not least by increasing participation in, and access to, the arts, supporting grassroots sports, and taking positive action on the environment.
Sky Movies is Europe's largest in-home movie service, showing around 450 different movies a week and up to 5 premieres every Friday. Viewers to Sky Movies get access to 70 of the year's top 100 movies at least one year before any other free or subscription television service – all uncut and ad free. Sky Movies is available via 11 linear channels on the Sky+HD set-top box, on demand and on the move via Sky Go. Sky Movies is also available on a range of other platforms, including NOW TV - the new internet TV service powered by Sky - Virgin Media, UPC and TalkTalk.
About Warner Bros.
In 2011, Warner Bros. delivered record box office grosses of £205.8 million to be crowned the UK's number one film studio for the second consecutive year. Warner Home Video UK was also named the UK's number one home entertainment distributor for the second year running.
In 2011, Warner Bros. produced six movies in the UK: The Dark Knight Rises, Wrath of the Titans, Dark Shadows, Argo, Gravity and Jack The Giant Killer.
The Dark Knight Rises is the UK's highest grossing movie of 2012 (year to date) with a box office of over £55 million.
In June 2012, Warner Bros. Studios Leavesden, a state-of-the-art film and television studio opened for business. Based just outside Watford, the £100 million facility is the only film studio in the country to be owned and operated by a major Hollywood studio. It is available to all kinds of productions, not just Warner Bros., from commercials to music videos, TV shows to feature films.
Formally the production home of all eight Harry Potter films, the new studio is spread across a secure 200-acre site and houses a collection of some of the largest sound stages in the UK spanning over a quarter of a million square feet, including one of the largest heated underwater filming tanks in Europe. In addition, the site provides an unrivalled, clear horizon 100 acre back-lot, one of the most extensive in Europe, which can be adapted for any production need.