Netflix, Inc. (Nasdaq: NFLX), the world’s largest online movie rental service, today announced an agreement with Disney-ABC Television Group that will make several of ABC’s most popular TV series available to be streamed instantly from Netflix.
In its entirety, the deal will allow Netflix members to instantly watch the first five seasons of the hit ABC franchise “Lost,” seasons four and five of the pop culture phenomenon “Desperate Housewives,” season five of the critically acclaimed “Grey’s Anatomy,” and seasons one and two of the syndicated epic action-adventure fantasy series “Legend of the Seeker” from ABC Studios. Many of the episodes, including the first four seasons of “Lost,” will be available from Netflix beginning August 1. The remainder will be available in subsequent months, beginning in September.
Overall, the agreement extends the online relationship between Netflix and Disney-ABC Television Group, which announced their first digital licensing deal last September. That agreement centered on original series from Disney Channel, including the hits “Hannah Montana,” “Wizards of Waverly Place,” “The Suite Life on Deck,” and Disney Channel’s two newest original series, “JONAS” and “Sonny with a Chance.” That deal, which will continue, makes episodes available day-after-broadcast.
The new agreement, which was brokered by Disney-ABC Domestic Television, adds top broadcast properties to a growing library of more than 12,000 movies and TV episodes that Netflix members can watch instantly on their computers and TVs as part of their membership at no additional monthly cost.
“We’re excited about this new agreement since it builds on a strong foundation with Disney-ABC Television Group,” said Robert Kyncl, vice president of content acquisition for Netflix. “In all, we’re providing Netflix members with some of the most popular and avidly followed shows on TV while working with an important business partner to help grow several of its key franchises.”
As Netflix continues to expand the movies and TV episodes that its members can watch instantly, the company is also partnering with leaders in consumer electronics to bring to market a growing number of network devices that can instantly stream movies and TV episodes from Netflix directly to members’ TVs. Those devices include Blu-ray disc players and new Internet TVs from LG Electronics; Blu-ray disc players from Samsung; the Roku digital video player; Microsoft’s Xbox 360 game console; TiVo digital video recorders; and, soon, Internet TVs from Sony and VIZIO.