Netflix Does Not Renew Epix, Loses ‘Hunger Games,’ ‘World War Z’ And More
Netflix has said it recently decided not to go through with renewing the company’s agreement with cable network Epix. This means that by the end of September, Netflix viewers will no longer be able to watch popular movies such as “World War Z,” “Transformers: Age of Extinction” and “Hunger Games: Catching Fire.” So if you still want to enjoy these films, Netflix says to watch them right away. In fact, they insist, “Now is the time.”
But just the same, Netflix believe their viewers should not be sad. After all, they have a lineup of films coming out in the coming months. What will be different is that instead of waiting for films to come to Netflix for more than a year after its been released in theaters, subscribers can now see films that are exclusively released on Netflix or released at the same time they hit theaters.
After seeing that releasing all episodes of an entire season of a television series worked well for subscribers, Netflix has now decided to premiere movies on Netflix globally at the same time they premiere on the big screen. The company has managed to secure a better arrangement than traditional studio license practice to make this happen. Netflix Chief Content Officer Ted Sarandos said that the company managed to gain exclusivity for U.S. pay TV home for the latest films from The Walt Disney Company, which will include Pixar, Lucasfilm as well as Marvel Movies. Furthermore, Netflix has also managed to worked out deals with Sony Pictures Animation, DreamWorks Animation and Universal Pictures to be able to show “Minions,” “Hotel Transylvania 2” and “Home” soon.
As for original films, Sarandos says that Netflix has partnered with a group of stellar directors and actors including Brad Pitt, Angelina Jolie, Sofia Coppola, Adam Sandler, Judd Apatow and Ricky Gervais. This resulted in a number of upcoming films from October to early 2016.
In October, Netflix will be showing “Beasts of No Nation” from Emmy Award-winning director Cary Fukunaga. In December, Adam Sandler will be debuting the first of four new comedies entitled “Ridiculous Six.” The film starts Taylor Lautner, Rob Schneider, Jorge Garcia, Steve Buscemi, Luke Wilson, David Spade, Whitney Cummings, Terry Crews, John Turturro, Harvey Keitel, Steve Zahn and Will Forte. Meanwhile, also in December, Netflix will show “A Very Murray Christmas,” starring Bill Murray and directed by Sofia Coppola. And in early 2016, “Pee-wee’s Big Holiday” will be coming to Netflix, which is produced by Judd Apatow. Also around the same time, Harvey Weinstein’s “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon: Green Legend” will be showing.
Sarandos understands that there are subscribers who will be disappointed with the expiration of Epix. But he promises, the Netflix film slate is “ever-improving.”