Tuesday 22 October 2019

Netflix pulls 1,800 films in 'Streamageddon' purge

House of Cards starring Kevin Spacey has been honoured at internet awards the Webbys
House of Cards starring Kevin Spacey has been honoured at internet awards the Webbys

Jennifer O'Mahony

Online streaming service Netflix has allowed licensing agreements with three of Hollywood's largest studios to lapse, purging the service of 1,800 films in a phenomenon dubbed "Streamageddon" by angry fans.

Sky, Netflix and Amazon have decided to secure their audiences by making must-see TV of their own. Hence Netflix has produced 'House of Cards', starring Kevin Spacey (pictured) 

 Netflix did not renew some of its agreements with MGM, Universal and Warner Bros. studios, choosing instead to let cult favourites fall out of the catalogue of on-demand entertainment offered.

The "kill list" is eclectic, including American college drama Cruel Intentions, highbrow Britflick Tyrannosaur and all four seasons of US reality show Jersey Shore.

Joris Evers, director of global corporate communications at Netflix, told the website Mashable: "Netflix is a dynamic service, we constantly update the TV shows and movies that are available to our members. We will add more than 500 titles May 1, but we also have titles expiring, this ebb and flow happens all the time."

"We are selective about what’s available to watch on Netflix. We often license TV shows and movies on an exclusive basis, so we can provide a unique experience. We’ll forego, or choose not renew, titles that aren’t watched enough.

"We always use our knowledge about what our members love to watch to decide what’s available on Netflix. Our goal is to be an expert programmer, offering a mix that delights our members, rather than trying to be a broad distributor."

Netflix has recently won acclaim for commissioning the critically lauded US remake of British drama House of Cards, starring Kevin Spacey.

The decision to remove films watched by too few viewers brings into question Netflix's claim to offer "unlimited" entertainment, with the service moving to a curated rather than comprehensive model.


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