Netflix’s five year distribution deal with Epix is coming to an end next month, and the company has announced that it won’t be renewing it. The deal was first signed back in 2010, and Netflix is reported to have paid Epix somewhere around $1 billion in licensing fees over the course of deal. However, while popular series like the Hunger Games and Transformers will be leaving Netflix next month, the company says that this doesn’t really matter because it’s working on a bunch of original content that it claims we’ll love just as much.
Netflix says it is not renewing a distribution deal with cable network Epix, which means its U.S. subscribers will lose access to big Hollywood movies like “Hunger Games: Catching Fire”, “World War Z” and “Transformers: Age of Extinction”at the end of September. The trade-off, says Netflix: It is making its own movies — but subscribers will have to wait a while to see most of them. Epix is a joint venture of MGM, Lions Gate Entertainment and Viacom’s Paramount. Netflix signed on with the pay TV network 5 years ago, but it hasn’t had exclusive streaming rights for those studios’ films since 2012, when Amazon signed its own Epix deal. Industry sources say Epix is likely to replace Netflix with a distribution deal with Hulu, the Web video service co-owned by Fox, Disney and Comcast’s NBCUniversal. “We’ve enjoyed a five year partnership with Epix, but our strategic paths are no longer aligned,” Netflix content boss Ted Sarandos said in a statement. “Our focus has shifted to provide great movies and TV series for our members that are exclusive to Netflix. Epix focus is to make sure that their movies will be widely available for consumers through a variety of platforms.” There’s more from Sarandos in a blog post.