Remember when Hulu paying $130 million for the rights to Seinfeld seemed like a lot of money? How quaint. In the years since, WarnerMedia and NBCUniversal dropped $425 million and $500 million, respectively, to stream Friends and The Office, while just yesterday, it was announced that Netflix landed Seinfeld in a five-year, worldwide deal for “more than $500 million.” But even that’s nothing compared to The Big Bang Theory.
According to the Hollywood Reporter, “HBO Max has secured the exclusive, domestic streaming rights to The Big Bang Theory. As part of the deal with Warner Bros. Television, the multicamera comedy created by Chuck Lorre and Bill Prady has also extended its syndication deal with TBS and will air on the WarnerMedia-owned basic cable network through 2028… Sources estimate that the deal, including both the streaming end and syndication extension, is worth in the billions of dollars.” The inflated cost, compared to what Netflix paid for Seinfeld, is due to the deal including both streaming and syndicated rights (there’s also more seasons), but still: bazinga, indeed:
“Few shows define a generation and capture mainstream zeitgeist like The Big Bang Theory,” said Robert Greenblatt, chairman, WarnerMedia Entertainment and direct-to-consumer. “We’re thrilled that HBO Max will be the exclusive streaming home for this comedy juggernaut when we launch in the spring of 2020. This show has been a hit virtually around the globe, it’s one of the biggest shows on broadcast television of the last decade, and the fact that we get to bring it to a streaming platform for the first time in the U.S. is a coup for our new offering.”
HBO Max’s non-acquired programming — i.e. not the robust HBO and Adult Swim catalogues — includes a Gossip Girl spin-off and a Gremlins animated series. If Gizmo wears a Flash shirt like Sheldon, I’m canceling my subscription.
(Via Hollywood Reporter)