Starz Play Arabia, the video streaming service for premium TV channel Starz available in the Middle East and North Africa, has unveiled a deal with NBCUniversal International Distribution to offer its popular TV series and movies to subscribers.
Terms of the deal to get Starz deeper into the binge-TV business were not disclosed. The new additions to Starz Play include TV shows like Mr. Robot, Bates Motel, 12 Monkeys and, later this year, both seasons of Shades of Blue, starring Jennifer Lopez and Ray Liotta.
The NBCUniversal library deal also will make available to Starz Play subscribers movies such as Luc Besson's Lucy, starring Scarlett Johansson and Morgan Freeman; The Bourne Legacy, the fourth installment of the Bourne franchise; the Ethan Hawke-starrer The Purge; and Despicable Me.
The studio deal is the latest for Starz Play after recent agreements with the international distribution arms of Warner Bros. and 20th Century Fox. "This new arrangement is about adding more to Starz Play's rich library of blockbuster Hollywood movies, current U.S. TV series, documentaries and children's entertainment," Maaz Sheikh, CEO at Starz Play, said in a statement.
Starz, which evolved from pay TV to go over-the-top with Starz Play in the Middle East rather than initially in the U.S. market, has increased its direct-to-consumer streaming offerings to more than 6,000 hours of TV series and movies, available in 19 countries.
That expansion has gathered pace after the recent $4.4 billion merger of Starz with Lionsgate to create a global content powerhouse. The newly combined company has a 16,000-title film and TV library, making it the largest independent TV business in the world, with 87 original series on 42 U.S. networks.