Netflix Nabs Seinfeld Streaming Rights in $500 Million-Plus Deal – Fox News

Netflix Nabs Seinfeld Streaming Rights in $500 Million-Plus Deal  – Fox News


 Netflix will soon lose U.S. streaming rights to Friends and The Office, but it appears the streaming giant has found another NBC juggernaut to help recoup its losses: In 2021, Netflix will welcome Seinfeld to its library  According to the Los Angeles Times, Sony and Netflix will announce the deal on Monday (A representative for Netflix confirmed the deal to V.F.) All 180 episodes of the acerbic sitcom will be available worldwide, in a pact that spans five years Although an exact figure is unknown, the L.A. Times reports that because this is an international deal, Netflix paid more than the $500 million it spent to acquire U S. streaming rights to The Office, and the $425 million it shelled out for U.S. Friends rights, according to sources familiar with the agreement (Friends and The Office are now available on Netflix internationally as well, and will remain so for the time being, despite the two shows’ impending departures from the U S. platform.) This deal will likely come as a blow not only to Hulu, which currently holds U S. Seinfeld rights, but also to Amazon, which carries the show abroad. According to the L A. Times, Netflix beat out bids from not only those two streamers, but also from WarnerMedia, NBCUniversal, and Viacom, which merged with CBS and therefore controls the streaming platform CBS All Access Both WarnerMedia and NBCUniversal are launching streaming platforms of their own, and recently poached several NBC hits back from Netflix: WarnerMedia’s HBO Max will soon become home to Friends, while NBCUniversal is bringing The Office back to the Peacock as one of its strongest properties As the streaming wars intensify, beloved sitcoms have become fodder for some lucrative deals: HBO Max gained streaming rights to both The Big Bang Theory and Two and a Half Men last month in a $1 5 billion dollar deal, and has also snagged rights to The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air  But is the astronomical sum Netflix just spent to carry Seinfeld internationally a wise investment? There’s been some debate as to how big a hit Netflix will take when it loses rights to Friends and The Office in the U S. Although the shows make up a significant chunk of the streamer’s viewing time in the U S., as media analyst Richard Greenfield pointed out to V.F. this summer, “Eighty-three percent of Netflix subscriber adds in the past year came from overseas, where this has no impact ” The appeal of adding Seinfeld to Netflix’s international roster is obvious: in addition to uniting Jerry Seinfeld’s current Netflix projects, Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee and multiple stand-up specials, with his original TV hit, it could boost U S. viewership to make up for the hole left behind by Friends and The Office and also provide a bump abroad But can Seinfeld—a series that has become notorious for its translational difficulties, actually bring in enough of an international following to merit Netflix’s big spend? As Jennifer Kleishin Armstrong, author of Seinfeldia, noted in a 2015 article, Seinfeld is a huge hit in the U S. and Latin America—but it’s failed to make a mainstream splash in European countries like Germany, France, Italy, and the Netherlands “More so than the average American sitcom, Seinfeld has had difficulty reaching global audiences,” Armstrong wrote; in Europe, she added, “it is considered a cult hit, and commonly relegated to deep-late-night time slots Its humor, it seems, is just too complicated, too cultural and word-based, to make for easy translation ” If Latin America loves Seinfeld enough, and a healthy number of cult TV lovers in Europe tune in, perhaps that will be enough—but it seems Netflix might be taking a bit of a gamble here Advertisement Either way, Ted Sarandos appears confident with the decision. “Seinfeld is the television comedy that all television comedy is measured against,” Sarandos said in a statement “It is as fresh and funny as ever and will be available to the world in 4K for the first time We can’t wait to welcome Jerry, Elaine, George and Kramer to their new global home on Netflix ” — Our cover story: Lupita Nyong’o on Us, Black Panther, and much more— Five appalling stories from the set of The Wizard of Oz— Hugh Grant’s very English comeback— How’s Joker? Our critic says Joaquin Phoenix towers in a deeply troubling film— Lori Loughlin finally gets a win Looking for more? Sign up for our daily Hollywood newsletter and never miss a story

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