×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

China’s Youku to stream ‘Inception’

Online vid site connects with Warner Bros.

China’s biggest online video streaming site, Youku.com, has paired up with Warner Bros. to stream “Inception” to Chinese webizens — the latest sign of increased sophistication in the world’s fastest-growing movie market.

Youku.com will stream the movie through its Youku Premium on-demand service, which allows Internet users to watch it on various devices, including cell phones, a hugely popular way of catching movies in China, where there are now 450 million Web users.

Youku.com is effectively China’s answer to YouTube, which is banned in the country. Although it’s primarily a site for user-generated content, Youku has increasingly turned to premium content to broaden its appeal.

In December, it listed on the New York Stock Exchange. The stock rose 161% to $33.44 on the first day of trading, the biggest gain for a U.S. initial public offering in five years.

“Through building long-term partnerships with copyright holders and communicating with our media partners, Youku Premium is creating a whole new way for people to find and watch the content they want, when they want it,” Youku founder and CEO Victor Koo said in a statement.

Popular on Variety

“Inception” made $69 million during its theatrical run in China, according to figures from the State Administration of Radio Film and TV, and the China Film Distribution and Exhibition Assn.

Youku has set up a dedicated page for “Inception” where, as well as watching the film anywhere, users can interact.

China’s film market is booming. The box office for 2010 is expected to exceed $1.5 billion, up 65% on the $910 million reported in 2009.

More Film

  • Endeavor Content Studio Logo

    Endeavor Content, Studio Exile Strike First-Look Deal With Mexican Producer Subtrama (EXCLUSIVE)

    Endeavor Content is upping its local-language game, signing a significant first look deal with Mexico City-based producer Subtrama. Endeavor enters the deal with studio Exile, a long-form English and Spanish content maker. Subtrama is behind series like Cary Fukunaga’s Netflix drama “Maniac” and films like Gael García Bernal’s “Museo.” Mauricio Katz, Manuel Alcalá, and Panorama [...]

  • Taylor Swift Variety Facetime

    How Midterm Elections Inspired Taylor Swift's New Song, 'Only the Young'

    Miss Americana was keeping another song about America in her back pocket, as it turns out. Taylor Swift recorded a song during her “Lover” album sessions, “Only the Young,” that was held back and kept under wraps for the right occasion — that occasion turning out to be “Miss Americana,” the Lana Wilson-directed documentary that [...]

  • Bradley Cooper Nightmare Alley

    Netflix Nabs Bradley Cooper's Leonard Bernstein Drama

    Netflix will back Bradley Cooper’s upcoming drama about Leonard Bernstein, the legendary conductor and musical maestro behind “West Side Story” and “Candide,” Variety has confirmed. The film was initially set up at Paramount. It has an A-list lineup of producers, including Martin Scorsese, Steven Spielberg, Emma Tillinger Koskoff, and Todd Phillips. Kristie Macosko Krieger from [...]

  • The Simpsons - Disney parodies -

    Disney Mashes Up 'The Simpsons' Parodies of Disney Films, Theme Parks

    Disney has embraced some of the gentle ribbing dished out by “The Simpsons” over the years — hoping to convince more people to sign up for Disney Plus. The media conglomerate released a compilation of what it calls “the best Disney references in ‘The Simpsons,'” which is now part of the Disney empire, with past [...]

  • Lin-Manuel Miranda

    Sundance 2020: Will the Market Be Colder After Last Year's Spree?

    When it comes to big acquisition deals for independent movies, Sundance is the room where it happens, to borrow a lyric from “Hamilton.” So it’s a lucky coincidence that Lin-Manuel Miranda will be a guest at this year’s film festival. For the first time, Miranda will hit the slopes in Park City, Utah, to rub [...]

  • Oprah Russell Simmons Documentary

    Oprah Defends Decision to Exit #MeToo Doc: 'This Is Not a Victory for Russell' Simmons

    Oprah Winfrey explained her decision to step away from “On the Record,” an expose about sexual harassment in the music industry, including women who have accused mogul Russell Simmons of misconduct. The documentary, from filmmakers Kirby Dick and Amy Ziering, will premiere at Sundance on Jan. 25. Winfrey, who served as an executive producer and [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content