Warner Bros. Discovery and viacom18 unveil material alliance for Indian market
By siliconindia | Thursday, 27 April 2023, 02:19:15 PM IST
Warner Bros. Discovery and Viacom18 have signed a multi-year agreement that will make JioCinema a new home for HBO, Max Original, and Warner Bros. content in India starting next month. The contract encompasses exclusive content rights across digital and linear services.
The announcement follows Disney Star’s decision to end its longstanding content partnership with Warner Bros. Discovery. As a result, 144 HBO Originals, including hit series such as Game of Thrones, House of the Dragons, The Last of Us, and Succession, were removed from Disney+ Hotstar as of March 31. The dispute arose over HBO’s $10 million annual asking price for a five-year deal, which Disney+ Hotstar, seeking to boost profitability, reportedly deemed insufficient in terms of value.
Under the new agreement, Viacom18 will offer the HBO and Warner content lineup to its Indian users via linear channels and the JioCinema streaming service. HBO Original, Max Original, and Warner Bros. Television series are slated to premiere on JioCinema concurrently with their U.S. debuts, according to the partnering firms.
The deal includes current and future seasons of HBO’s series such as House of The Dragon, The Last of Us, Succession and The White Lotus, and returning seasons of True Detective: Night Country, Euphoria, Winning Time: The Rise of the Lakers Dynasty and Perry Mason. Also featured as part of the agreement are HBO Original series including The Idol, White House Plumbers, The Sympathizer and The Regime. In addition, HBO’s series and documentaries, including Game of Thrones, Sex & The City, Big Little Lies, Chernobyl and Veep, will be available for users.
Max Original series including, And Just Like That…, Peacemaker, and The Flight Attendant, premieres such as Dune: The Sisterhood, The Batman spinoff The Penguin, and Duster, from J.J. Abrams and LaToya Morgan, as well as Warner Bros. Television series like East New York and Gotham Knights are also part of the offering.
Future Warner Bros. movies and the film library including the Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings and DC Universe movies, as well kids’ animation titles like Dexter’s Laboratory and Tom and Jerry Kids will also be available on JioCinema.
“Warner Bros. Discovery’s brands are incredibly popular across India, and we are pleased to partner with Viacom18 to bring our premium HBO, Max Original and Warner Bros. content to local fans. This new agreement demonstrates our commitment to South Asia as we seek to entertain audiences across more platforms, and further strengthens the scale of our regional business as a whole," Clement Schwebig, president, India, Southeast Asia, and Korea, Warner Bros. Discovery, said in a statement.
Ferzad Palia, head – SVoD and international business, Viacom18, said JioCinema has become the biggest platform for live sports. “We are now on a mission to build a destination for entertainment for all Indians. The strategic partnership with Warner Bros. Discovery is a big milestone in our journey to offer the best of Hollywood content to our elite consumers. We believe that Warner Bros. Discovery sets the global standards for premium content and this partnership allows us to create the best and the most comprehensive destination for our users," Palia said.
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