Major Studios Link to Offer Premium TV, VOD Service

Apr 20, 2008  •  Post A Comment

A new premium television and video-on-demand service was announced by Viacom, Paramount Pictures, MGM Studios and Lionsgate. The venture would compete with pay cable providers HBO, Showtime and Starz Encore.
Showtime is owned by CBS Inc., which is controlled by Sumner Redstone, who is also the key shareholder of Viacom, parent of Paramount Pictures.
The new service will have exclusive access during the pay window to film titles from Paramount and Paramount Vantage this year and the other studios next year. Also included in the deal are library films and new original television series from the studios.
Viacom’s MTV Networks will provide marketing and affiliate relations services for the new venture.
“This venture has the potential to be a game changer for the industry. We are building an innovative service that will use traditional and new digital distribution technologies to bring great film and television entertainment directly to the consumer,” said Viacom CEO Philippe Dauman.
“By combining the output of Paramount with MGM and Lionsgate, two film and television powerhouses, we are creating a premium film and television programming brand with unique flexibility to bring consumers the very best blockbuster movies and innovative TV series,” he added.


  1. I feel that the movie powerhouses would be best to bring us the films we want on cable television. Being a subscriber to HBO and Starz Encore I find that a lot of the programming they offer is outdated older films which by all means should not be included in a pay channel lineup. I absolutely do not want to pay for a movie that is 20 years old. Maybe with a little more competition channels such as HBO will be forced to get more up to date programming options for the viewer.

  2. Wow. Viacom must really hate the CBS unit. Why else would Viacom even fathom creating a premium network that:
    a) competes against Showtime.
    b) takes away all of Showtime’s sole premium movie exclusives
    c) essentially writes off even aligning with Showtime?
    At first glance, it seems like a premium basic network, which is oxymoronic in concept (older network shows with uncut Hollywood movies?). But the network seems like nothing more than Viacom one-upping their corporate cousin and possibly making it a doomed network within three years.

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