HBO deal a final brick ahead of new streaming launch
Exclusive new content from Warner Media positions Foxtel for its new streaming service.
When Foxtel’s new streaming offering -rumoured to be called Binge- launches in Australia it will have exclusive new HBO Max titles.
Yesterday’s output deal with Warner Media is the final content component for the service known internally as Project Ares and ends speculation HBO Max may launch as a stand-alone.
“We were very well positioned to be able to take the whole of the high quality output, and use it on multiple platforms in multiple ways -whether it’s our channels, our video on demand platform for iQ3 and iQ4, or whether it’s our aspirations to get into streaming for drama and movies,” CEO Patrick Delany told TV Tonight.
“We will get anything that’s produced by Warner Media for HBO Max, I don’t think we need to worry about other services being launched.
“We’re better place to monetise this content than anyone else and now we’ve got the freedom to develop new platforms. This deal goes along with all of the other deals we’ve done over the last 18 months where we’ve been getting the right Rights as well as the right Content for the 21st century. It’s sort of that final brick in the wall.”
Under the deal Foxtel secures Warner films, whether Pay per View / first window on Pay, HBO Max originals, television series plus the Warners library including Friends and The Big Bang Theory (some library titles are not exclusive). It also includes Warner-owned channels Warner Boomerang, Cartoon Network and CNN.
“We’ve had a relationship with Warner Brothers Film and Television for 25 years. This is a renewal of that relationship, but I think, it’s the first very big deal done by Warner Media since it put all of its brands in one place for distribution.”
Amongst the new titles are a reboot of Gossip Girl, The Flight Attendant starring Kaley Cuoco and Ridley Scott’s upcoming sci-fi series Raised by Wolves.
“I think the important thing is the Warner Brothers material is high quality and very popular, but it also skews to different demographics. And that suits us because whether it be our Pay TV platform or streaming services, they’re all aimed at different markets. This content enables us to use that and give our customers the content they love,” he continues.
Project Ares is expected to complement Kayo Sports, as a drama streaming offering, but if Binge is the brand, does it mean shows will screen weekly as well as entire series?
“You can’t get around that, right?” Delany replied.
“With any streaming service if you’ve got the whole season then you put it down, but I think there’s even a few on Netflix that they’re taking from other sources, where episodes are added (weekly). But yes, that’s going to be the case as we go forward for some series.
“I couldn’t comment about the new service but the world can only put up what’s produced and released.”