Netflix Renews PBS Deal for Multiple Series and Specials (Exclusive)

Netflix will continue streaming multiple PBS kids’ series, Ken Burns documentaries and other fare under an extension with the pubcaster covering subscribers in the U.S.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed. The PBS content had been slated to expire from Netflix’s streaming service in the U.S. effective June 30.

The shows covered under the renewal include: “Wild Kratts” season one (along with the addition of season two), “Dinosaur Train” season two, “Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood” season one, “Martha Speaks” season one and “Caillou” season five.

Under the renewal, Netflix also will add PBS’s “Peg + Cat” (pictured above), which won the 2014 Daytime Emmy award for outstanding preschool children’s animated program.

Also covered under the Netflix deal with PBS are Ken Burns documentaries including “The Civil War,” “The Central Park Five,” “The War,” “The Dust Bowl,” “Prohibition,” “The West,” “Baseball” and “Jazz.” The renewal also gives Netflix continued rights to stream episodes of PBS’s Nova series.

The Netflix renewal does not cover kids’ show “WordGirl” or PBS’s “Masterpiece” series, which have been available under the previous agreement. Through a separate deal with the not-for-profit Sesame Workshop, Netflix offers six recent seasons of “Sesame Street” (seasons 37-42).

Meanwhile, Amazon.com — which has stepped up its competition with Netflix in licensing TV content — has cut deals with PBS for exclusive SVOD rights to all seasons of hit drama “Downton Abbey,” as well as “Mr. Selfridge” period drama starring Jeremy Piven. Amazon also offers many of the same PBS shows licensed to Netflix via the Prime Instant Video service.

For Netflix, retaining the PBS children’s programming is particularly key as the company’s rivalry with Amazon has been marked by competition in the genre.

Recent Netflix kids’ content acquisitions have included a new series based on Mattel’s “Ever After High” and Scholastic Media’s “Magic School Bus” franchise. Under its broad deal with DreamWorks Animation, the service will add new series “DreamWorks Dragons,” based on the studio’s “How to Train Your Dragon” franchise, along with “Dinotrux,” “King Julien,” “Puss in Boost” and “VeggieTales in the House.”

Amazon, for its part, last week nabbed exclusive rights to “Wallace and Gromit,” “Shaun the Sheep” and other animated series and specials under a pact with Aardman Animations. Amazon Studios also is bowing three original kids’ series this summer: “Tumble Leaf,” “Creative Galaxy” and “Annedroids.”

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