Amazon Adds HBO Series to Prime Instant Video Including ‘Boardwalk Empire,’ ‘Sopranos’

Boardwalk Empire Ratings Down

Exclusive deal covers content at least three years old, excludes 'Game of Thrones' is now streaming the first wave of HBO programming, including original series “The Sopranos,” “Boardwalk Empire” and “True Blood,” on Prime Instant Video under the exclusive deal the companies reached last month.

The pact covers library programming that originally aired on HBO three or more years ago. That includes all seasons of “The Sopranos,” “The Wire,” “Deadwood,” “Rome,” “Six Feet Under,” “Eastbound & Down,” “Enlightened” and “Flight of the Conchords.”

In addition, Amazon Prime members will have access to select seasons of current series such as “True Blood,” “Boardwalk Empire” and “Treme,” again which are at least three years old.

Other HBO content available includes miniseries “Band of Brothers,” “The Pacific,” “John Adams,” “Parade’s End” and “Angels in America”; original movies “Mary and Martha,” “Temple Grandin” and “You Don’t Know Jack”; original comedy specials from Louis CK, Ellen DeGeneres, Lewis Black and Bill Maher; and documentaries including “When the Levees Broke” and “Ghosts of Abu Ghraib.”

Analysts estimate that Amazon will pay at least $200 million to HBO, and as much as $400 million, over the life of the multiyear pact. Netflix did not bid for the HBO content, Netflix CFO David Wells said this week (nor did the cabler offer to license it to Netflix).

SEE ALSO: Amazon’s Battle With Netflix Has Only Just Begun

“We’re thrilled to deliver this collection of groundbreaking, beloved content from HBO to Amazon Prime members for unlimited streaming at no additional cost,” said Brad Beale, director of digital video content acquisition for Amazon.

The HBO programming is available only to Amazon Prime members in the U.S. The deal excludes new and future shows on HBO, which means “True Detective” and “Silicon Valley,” for example, will not be coming to Amazon Prime Instant Video under the terms of the present deal. In addition, HBO has not licensed “Game of Thrones” to Amazon, while three older shows that are tied up in U.S. syndication deals — “Sex and the City,” “Entourage” and “Curb Your Enthusiasm” — are also excluded.

Down the road, Amazon will bring more HBO shows to Prime Instant Video after they come into the window three years after the seasons air. That is to include current shows like “Girls,” “The Newsroom” and “Veep.”

SEE ALSO: Why HBO Is Keeping ‘Game of Thrones,’ Other Shows Out of Amazon’s Hands

Also under the pact, HBO Go will become available on the Amazon Fire TV set-top later this year.

The deal with HBO represents Amazon’s most aggressive move to compete with Netflix for streaming-video share. Other exclusive TV series acquisitions the ecommerce giant has made include Fox’s “24” and “24: Live Another Day”; CBS’s “Under the Dome”; PBS series “Downton Abbey” and “Mr. Selfridge”; FX dramas “The Americans” and “Justified”; BBC America’s “Orphan Black”; TNT’s “Falling Skies”; NBC’s “Hannibal”; and MTV’s “Teen Wolf.”

Filed Under:

Want to read more articles like this one? SUBSCRIBE TO VARIETY TODAY.
Post A Comment 1

Leave a Reply

1 Comment

Comments are moderated. They may be edited for clarity and reprinting in whole or in part in Variety publications.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

  1. JohnA says:

    I’ll watch some Rome and True Blood for free! Love that HBO’s finally gotten with the times and is offering their content on something other than HBO Go, I live outside the US and have to access Amazon and Netflix via VPN (I use, which basically means HBO Go is useless since I don’t have an account with one of the cable companies over there.

More Digital News from Variety