LOS ANGELES -- Netflix, Inc (Nasdaq: NFLX) and Nu Image/Millennium Films today announced a long-term agreement through which first-run theatrical films distributed by the Nu Image/Millennium Group will be licensed to Netflix for streaming over the Internet to its subscribers during the "pay TV window." Historically, these films have been licensed to premium TV channels.
The deal underscores how Netflix is moving rapidly to expand both the variety and timeliness of movies and TV episodes available to be watched instantly by its members. The companies said they expect five to 10 theatrical films per year to flow to Netflix through the agreement, in general just a few months after their release on DVD.
Nu Image and Millennium Films are best known for big budget action/thriller movies including: The Expendables, John Rambo, Brooklyn's Finest, Righteous Kill, 16 Blocks and Black Dahlia.
"We are delighted to be in business with Netflix," said Avi Lerner, co-chairman of Nu Image/Millennium. "This is a groundbreaking deal for our new releases and library titles. It will allow us to be more aggressive with theatrical releases and will clearly impact our distribution model. We will be producing more great films for Netflix."
"Avi Lerner and Nu Image have a remarkable track record of producing crowd pleasing and profitable films," said Ted Sarandos, chief content officer for Netflix. "Their ability to work across multiple studios and maintain a consistent output of diverse and successful films makes Avi and his company perfect Netflix partners for theatrical features in the pay TV window."
Among the first films to be covered under the deal is Dito Monteil's 2011 scheduled release Son of No One, a crime drama starring Channing Tatum, Al Pacino, Katie Holmes, Tracy Morgan, Ray Liotta and Juliette Bincoche about a young cop assigned to the working class Queens neighborhood in which he grew up and the discovery of a horrible family secret. Also slated for Netflix via the new agreement is 2011's scheduled Elephant White, starring Academy Award® nominee Djimon Hounsou and Golden Globe® winner Kevin Bacon in a drama about a contract killer who gets swept up in the dangerous business of white slave traders in Thailand.
The deal was negotiated by David Sobieraj, president of domestic video and television for Nu Image/Millennium Films, and Robert Kyncl, vice president of content acquisition for Netflix.