Comcast and Starz Entertainment ink movie deal

MUMBAI: What is touted as the single largest video-on-demand movie content agreement to date, the US cable major Comcast and Starz Entertainment Group LLC (SEG), the provider of premium movie services in the United States, have inked a deal to offer more than 1,500 movies a year from SEG's extensive library to Comcast's ON DEMAND video-on-demand service.

The agreement also covers the launch of two new SEG premium movie channels on Comcast systems and provides for the extension of the affiliation agreement between the two companies into the next decade. Finally, the agreement provides Comcast more control over future programming costs while providing SEG greater predictability in its long-term revenue stream, stated an official release.

The comprehensive agreement paves the way for Comcast to bring Starz to more Comcast customers and expand Encore and its thematic channels to additional digital cable customers. In addition to access to these channels, the agreement covers broad video-on-demand rights. Comcast plans to offer digital cable customers who subscribe to Starz 325 top movie titles per month, and offer Encore customers 250 of these movie titles per month - all at no additional charge. Digital cable customers who would have paid $3-4 per movie to receive top movies now will each be able to receive up to $1,000 per month worth of value at no additional charge from Comcast.

Comcast will also make available for no additional charge 100 of the 250 Encore movies as part of a new digital cable package that will be the gateway to video-on-demand for those customers who have previously experienced traditional television content, the release added.

"This is the most important movie deal Comcast has ever done and is further evidence of our commitment to giving customers the most choice and the best content on television," president of Comcast Cable and COO of Comcast Corporation c said. "Going forward, we'll continue to leverage our superior two-way platform to differentiate our products and deliver the ultimate entertainment experience."

SEG president and CEO Robert B. Clasen said the deal represents a milestone in the development of video on demand, which has improved customer satisfaction and reduced subscriber churn wherever it has been introduced. "This agreement will also give us a long term relationship with the largest cable company in the country and provides a fabulous launching pad for two new channels."

Some of the more than 1,500 movies titles from SEG's extensive library that will be available on Comcast's On Demand video-on-demand service include: The Incredibles, Friday Night Lights, The Village, The Forgotten, The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou, The Lord of the Rings: Return of the King, The Pacifier, The Aviator, King Arthur, Finding Neverland, National Treasure, Elf, Wimbledon, Radio, Con Air, Spy Kids 3, Cold Creek Manor, Peter Pan, Ella Enchanted, Brother Bear, Mona Lisa Smile, The Missing, Mystic Pizza and Sister Act II.


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