Netflix has announced a new multi-year licensing deal in the United States with Universal Filmed Entertainment Group. The deal will see Animated Universal Films such as Puss in Boots and Minions come to Netflix after their 4-month window on Peacock, Comcast’s in-house streaming service. Netflix is currently streaming popular movies such as The Grinch and Despicable Me from Universal’s Illumination Studios. Netflix also added that it would license the rights to Universal’s live-action and full-animated films about four years after their release and the rights to other select films.
The deal should enable Netflix to keep the animation fanbase occupied, and this comes when popular studios such as Disney are holding back on selling rights to streamers to push their platforms. Comcast announced that new movies from Universal would exclusively go to Peacock after four months of debuting in theaters. At the same time, Universal also signed a deal with IMDb TV and Amazon, giving them exclusive rights to stream its live-action movie releases. They’ve also extended their partnership to include DreamWorks animation films such as the upcoming Puss in Boots: The Last Wish and The Bad Guys with Netflix.
The deal with Netflix is quite complex because, in as much as the company will have exclusive rights to animated movies from DreamWorks ad Illumination in the US, it will only have a bit of the 18 months after the films’ premiere in theaters. That means that all the Universal movies will only be available for streaming on Peacock within the initial four months. Netflix will then gain exclusive rights to stream them for ten months, after which the movies will go back to Peacock for another four months. After eighteen months, Universal’s animated movies will also be available for streaming on Amazon Prime Video.
More Exclusive Animated Films
Despite the complexity of the deal, it all comes down to the fact that Netflix will have continuous, exclusive access to some of what could turn out to be the most-watched movies on the platform. For instance, according to Forbes Analysis, Illumination’s: The Secret Life of Pets 2 is the most-watched Netflix movie in 2021 as of now. In 2020 the position was taken by another Illumination’s movie: Despicable Me.
The deal will help strengthen and improve the value of films and libraries available for licensing, with Sony recently signing a pay-one agreement with Netflix, which came at a record-setting price tag. Besides the licensing deal with DreamWorks animated films, Netflix has also developed animated features based on the studio’s current franchises such as Croods; The Beat Goes on and Spirit: Riding Free, All Hail King Julien, and Dragons: Rescue Riders. The agreement shows the importance of the content to the distribution partners as they focus on growing their subscribers and providing the very best for entertainment.
Netflix families love watching animated films repeatedly, and this deal will allow the platform to extend its library to ensure the animation fans have a plethora of animated movies to watch.