It looks like Sony Pictures Entertainment is not planning on launching its own streaming service any time soon as the studio has struck a stunning new deal with Netflix. The streaming platform will become the exclusive home for theatrically released Sony movies, starting in 2022. The new deal, announced on Thursday, builds on a previous agreement that brought Sony Pictures Animation films to Netflix before anywhere else.
The new deal gives Netflix first pay window rights to Sony Pictures movies after they complete their theatrical runs and are available on home video. Morbius, Uncharted, Where the Crawdads Sing and Bullet Train will be among the first Sony movies added under the deal in 2022. Future projects, including the sequel to Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, will also stream on Netflix, as well as future movies in the Spider-Man, Venom, Jumanji, and Bad Boys franchises. The deal also gives Netflix the first opportunity to snap up any films Sony's Motion Picture Group consider taking straight to streaming platforms instead of giving it a theatrical release.
"Sony Pictures is a great partner and we are thrilled to expand our relationship through this forward-thinking agreement," Scott Stuber, Head of Global Films at Netflix, said in a statement. “This not only allows us to bring their impressive slate of beloved film franchises and new IP to Netflix in the U.S., but it also establishes a new source of first-run films for Netflix movie lovers worldwide.”
“Netflix has been a terrific partner as we continue to expand our relationship,” Keith Le Goy, President, Worldwide Distribution and Networks, Sony Pictures Entertainment, added. “At Sony Pictures, we produce some of the biggest blockbusters and the most creative, original films in the industry. This exciting agreement further demonstrates the importance of that content to our distribution partners as they grow their audiences and deliver the very best in entertainment.”
The new deal could be seen as Sony also making a statement that it does not plan on launching its own streaming platform soon. The studio's biggest rivals all have their own services now. Disney has Disney+ and Hulu, while ViacomCBS recently re-branded CBS All Access as Paramount+ in March. NBCUniversal also has Peacock.
As for Netflix, this is the latest move to bolster its film offerings alongside its library of original films. Earlier this week, the company shocked Hollywood by paying $469 million to release Rian Johnson's upcoming Knives Out sequels. Netflix is reportedly paying director Johnson, producer Ram Bergman, and star Daniel Craig up to $100 million each, according to The Hollywood Reporter. Meanwhile, Netflix will release the long-delayed former 20th Century Fox movie The Woman in the Window starring Amy Adams on May 14.