Things are about to get a bit more confusing when it comes to finding films you want to watch on streaming services.
Beginning in 2022, all films from Universal Pictures will be heading to Peacock within four months after their theatrical releases. This is a definite acceleration of what is known as the “pay-one” window that used to see movies hit services six to seven months later. There is still a small caveat to this deal, however.
The Pay-one window is an 18-month span. The Universal films will come to Peacock first for four months. They will then leave the service for 10 months and will show on other streaming services. They will then leave those services and head back to Peacock for the final four months of the pay-one window.
UFEG vice-chairman Peter Levinsohn told The Hollywood Reporter that this new deal shows the company’s “continued commitment to building a film ecosystem that allows filmmakers and artists to reach the broadest possible audience, celebrates and strengthens the theatrical experience, and, above all, empowers fans to experience the films they love on their own terms.”
Levinsohn added, “We’re excited to become Peacock’s first pay-one partner while the platform continues to curate and build a vast film library that will delight its rapidly growing subscriber base.”
“Since launching Peacock just one year ago, we have seen incredible viewership of movies and continue to expand our catalog with a range of films for every fan and occasion,” said Matt Strauss, Chairman, Direct-to-Consumer and International, NBCUniversal.
“Universal Filmed Entertainment Group has been a fantastic partner and we are excited to not only bring their amazing slate of blockbuster films and beloved franchises to Peacock in the first-pay window, but also provide a steady stream of fresh, original films exclusively for Peacock customers throughout the year,” Strauss continued.
While this is yet another example of how the film industry is changing, one would have hoped for it to be slightly less confusing. One will need a flow chart to determine which service has the film depending on the month.