Friends saved at a substantial cost to Netflix
Friends will still be there for us in 2019, but that news doesn’t come cheap. Netflix agreed to a steep price to keep the hit comedy on its service.
Friends is not leaving Netflix in 2019. Thanks to a last-minute deal, Netflix managed to secure the Warner Bros. series. However, it turns out that it’s come at a steep cost. But we all know it’s worth the cost, right?
According to The New York Times, Netflix has agreed to pay $100 million per year for the rights to stream the comedy series. This is up from $30 million last year. What’s the betting that AT&T, which owns Time Warner, wanted more than the $100 million at first?
The pricing shows the demand for the series is high. It’s clear that people watch the show continuously. If you look at any list of top shows on Netflix, Friends will usually be somewhere on that list. My own Thanksgiving list included Friends at the very top because when you want a good Thanksgiving episode, it’s one of the best places to turn!
Now the question is what this means in 2020, when Warner Bros. streaming service will be available. The good news is Netflix wants to keep the series and AT&T is currently open to keeping it around. However, this will come at a price and negotiations have already started for 2020 and beyond.
While the show isn’t exclusively available through Netflix right now, the streaming service is exclusive in that the show is available as part of Netflix’s monthly membership. If you want to watch on Amazon and iTunes, you need to pay extra to buy the episodes. In 2020, things will change with Warner Bros. bringing its own streaming service. Friends will be available as part of the WB monthly subscription.
That means things will need to change for the price. Netflix won’t want to pay as much for something that isn’t exclusive.
This is if AT&T decides to allow Friends to remain on Netflix. When the WB streaming service is out, AT&T needs to make it competitive and draw people in. What better way than having it as the only place you can stream Friends to your heart’s content? This could lead to other big WB movies and shows only being available on the new service, including Wonder Woman, The Big Bang Theory, and even Harry Potter.
Disney and FOX have already started to remove their catalog. This month we lost Moana and Sons of Anarchy, with Brooklyn Nine-Nine and many others leaving in the months previous. AT&T could do the exact same. For now, at least the Holiday Armadillo saved the show on the streaming service.
Will you binge watch Friends daily to prove Netflix made the right decision to pay so much? I would personally thank them though.
News Courtesy: Netflix