×

‘Lonesome Dove,’ Other TV Miniseries Find Perch on YouTube Pay Channel

Sonar Entertainment will offer 1989 cowboy epic “Lonesome Dove” and more than 500 other made-for-TV miniseries and movies through YouTube’s recently launched pay-channel platform — though how many takers it will get for such older library fare is an open question.

Sonar’s “Minis + Movies” YouTube paid channel is available for $1.99 per month or $19.99 per year. Production and distribution company said it will add new titles monthly.

YouTube in May kicked off its pay-channels initiative with 53 channels, spanning genres from kids’ programming to mixed-martial arts and horror movies to British TV fare. Neither the Google-owned site nor its partners have disclosed how many subscribers have signed up in the intervening two months; YouTube says the initiative currently is in a “pilot” phase and expects to expand the program with self-service pay channels later in the year.

Initial titles on Sonar’s channel include Larry McMurtry’s four-part “Lonesome Dove” starring Tommy Lee Jones and Robert Duvall; “Merlin” with Sam Neill and Isabella Rossellini; “Tin Man” with Zooey Deschanel; “Aftershock” with Jennifer Garner; “Dying to Belong” with Hilary Swank; “Good Fences” with Danny Glover and Whoopi Goldberg; “The Yearling” with Philip Seymour Hoffman; and “True Women” with Angelina Jolie.

“Our library is rich with beloved and acclaimed titles, perfect to be watched over and over again,” Sonar Entertainment topper Stewart Till said in a statement. “We welcome this opportunity to make them available all in one place, easily accessible to a broad audience.”

New York-based Sonar, founded by Robert Halmi Sr., owns rights to 1,000-plus titles comprising more than 3,500 broadcast hours of programming. After a bankruptcy reorg and the exit of Halmi and his son, Robert Halmi Jr., company last year changed its name from RHI to Sonar.

Popular on Variety

More Digital

  • Elite Season 2

    San Sebastian: Spain’s SVOD Players Debate Competition, Brand, Talent

    SAN SEBASTIAN  — Executives from HBO, Netflix, Amazon and Movistar+ and “Elite” co-creator Darío Madrona took to the stage to field questions on the Global Impact of Spanish Series. Here, briefly, are five takeaways: 1.Spain First “La Casa de Papel” was watched by 34,355,956 Netflix accounts over its first seven days,  after a July 19 [...]

  • Tinder - Swipe Night

    Tinder's Apocalyptic 'Swipe Night' Interactive Dating Show Sets Release Date

    Tinder next month will bow its first original entertainment content — “Swipe Night,” an interactive adventure series in which viewers are forced to make dating choices on humanity’s last night on Earth. Variety previously reported details of the location-based social network/dating app service’s foray into original content, which recently wrapped production in Mexico City and [...]

  • Editorial Use onlyMandatory Credit: Photo by

    YouTube Rolls Back Verification Changes, Says Verified Creators Can Keep Their Badge

    A day after announcing significant changes to its verification program, YouTube announced Friday afternoon that it won’t be de-verifying existing creators after all. “We heard loud and clear how much the badge means to you,” said YouTube product manager Jonathan McPhie in a blog post. “Channels that already have the verification badge will now keep it [...]

  • BLive: BitTorrent Live Streaming App to

    BitTorrent to Launch Public Beta of New Live Streaming App

    BitTorrent is getting ready to open the floodgates for its new live streaming app, dubbed BitTorrent Live: The company plans to launch a BitTorrent Live Android app on various app stores as part of a public beta test late Friday, according to a spokesperson. BitTorrent Live, which is also known as BLive, is being described [...]

  • Netflix - Apple TV

    Netflix Stock Drops After CEO Acknowledges 'Tough Competition' Coming From Disney, Apple

    Netflix shares fell as much as 7% Friday to a nine-month low, coming after CEO Reed Hastings commented that the November launches of Disney Plus and Apple TV Plus will introduce a “whole new world” of competition. Hastings, speaking at the Royal Television Society conference Friday in Cambridge, England, said, “While we’ve been competing with [...]

  • Facebook

    Facebook Suspends Tens of Thousands of Apps During Privacy Investigation

    Facebook has suspended tens of thousands of apps ever since it began investigating potential privacy abuses, the company said Friday. The apps in question had been built by around 400 developers, and a suspension doesn’t necessarily indicate actual privacy violations. Facebook began combing through millions of apps that made use of its platform after the [...]

  • tivo logo

    Tivo Plans to Launch Android TV Dongle, Tivo+ Curation App

    DVR maker Tivo is getting ready to release a new device that may not record television at all: The company plans to launch a $50 Roku-like TV dongle early next year, its new CEO Dave Shull revealed in a conversation with CNN this week. The new device will be powered by Google’s Android TV platform, [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content