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Netflix Streaming ‘Hunger Games’ Month Early in the U.K.

1 Mar, 2013 By: Erik Gruenwedel

'The Hunger Games'

Popular teen movie will stream domestically at the end of the month

Netflix March 1 said it would begin streaming teen survivalist hit, The Hunger Games, on March 3 in the United Kingdom and Ireland. The Lionsgate title is not available to the subscription video-on-demand pioneer’s domestic and Canadian subscribers until the end of the month.

Netflix U.K. is the first SVOD availability of the box office hit anywhere in the world.

Hunger Games, which stars recent Oscar winner Jennifer Lawrence, was released into the domestic retail channel Aug. 18 and represented Lionsgate’s first UltraViolet release. The minimajor said the title, which generated more than $408 million at the domestic box office, contributed significantly to its third- and fourth-quarter home entertainment results.

The delay of the movie to Netflix’s domestic SVOD subscribers is due to Lionsgate’s contractual agreement with Epix, the premium TV and online platform it co-owns with MGM and Paramount Pictures. As a result, Netflix’s domestic subs don’t have access to Hunger Games until 90 days after its Jan. 1 bow on Epix.

“We are thrilled to be the exclusive online home for The Hunger Games in the U.K. and Ireland,” Ted Sarandos, Netflix chief content officer, said in a statement. “Since launching in the U.K. and Ireland in January 2012, we have continued to expand our offering of movies and TV programs, and we think our members are going to love the latest addition to the service.” 

Hunger Games is currently available on disc at Netflix’s by-mail rental service.

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