Netflix (NFLX) viewers got a hint of what was to happen when Starz-owned Sony movies disappeared from their Netflix queues in June. Now it's official: Starz (LSTZA) announced Thursday that it would no longer stream its movies on Netflix, ending a rocky agreement that began in 2008. Starz's sudden move to stop renegotiation talks could gut Netflix of Starz-owned Sony and Disney movies.

The current agreement ends in February 2012.

"This decision is a result of our strategy to protect the premium nature of our brand by preserving the appropriate pricing and packing of our exclusive and highly valuable content," Starz President and CEO Chris Albrecht said in a statement.

Trouble has been brewing for a while. In late June, Starz asked Netflix to yank Sony films, including The Social Network and Salt. This was reportedly due to a clause that dictated if Netflix subscriptions grew past 22.8 million, Starz would have to renegotiate better terms for Sony in its contract with the studio, according to reports by Reuters and The Los Angeles Times. That, in turn, would compel Starz to ask for more money from Netflix.

But Starz officially cut off contract talks, and it doesn't look like a Hollywood ending for Sony and Disney streamed content on Netflix.

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September 02 2011 at 12:09 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

How NetFlix was able to conduct business in the last 3-4 years through the mail system was remarkable. Now movie makers and providers see how lucrative this business is and are demanding a greater return from Netflix. Netflix business model is changing to accomodate those demands but not enough to satisfy Starz. Blockbuster lasted over 20 years and wonder if Netflix can do the same. That's how fast technologies are changing this business. A little scary for shareholders because Netflix is not the only game in town.

September 02 2011 at 10:55 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

This will probably hurt Netflix a lot worse than their recent price restructuring. Higher prices are one thing; a predigious drop-off in content at any price is entirely another. Good thing I use DVDs exclusively.

September 02 2011 at 9:58 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

After netflix divided streaming and DVD subscription i was trying to hold off dropping Netflix. The only reason i was still subscribing to Netflix was becasue of my daughter being able to watch Disney shows. After dropping the DVD subscription i guess i will be dropping Netflix completly. Amazon streaming looks like a great choice and the Roku player is awesome. Netflix can suck it!

September 02 2011 at 9:26 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I want a few good reliable providers and not have to go to a dozen different sites and have a dozen different passwords and accounts. Instead of many small pieces of many pies (netflix, itunes, amazon) they want all of one pie(sony media). Greed will delay and hurt streaming sales and increase use of pirated sources when people can't get the new material they want in a timely and inexpensive manner.

September 01 2011 at 8:41 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply