The latest battle in the streaming wars is the arms race between two services that haven’t launched yet: Peacock, NBCUniversal’s streaming service, and HBO Max. Thursday brought news of a slew of shows announced for Peacock, as well as some details about how people will actually be able to access Peacock. That includes a big deal for Law and Order creator Dick Wolf.
According to a Hollywood Reporter story from Thursday, Wolf’s entire library — including Law and Order and Chicago shows — has been on the market and Peacock has paid handsomely for six shows.
BOOM! Dick Wolf, who has been shopping his entire 72-season-plus library, has sold streaming rights to six shows to Peacock in a deal worth $300M-$400M. My report: https://t.co/KlJ6pnqKw6 pic.twitter.com/U0ax71CffY
— Lesley Goldberg (@Snoodit) January 16, 2020
Interestingly, however, the deal is non-exclusive, which means Wolf can continue to sell the rights to his other shows as well as the ones included in the deal.
Sources say the Peacock SVOD deal is non-exclusive and covers only domestic rights. Hulu — which quietly renewed its SVU library deal with Universal Television — and Amazon are also both said to have domestic rights to the spinoff starring Mariska Hargitay. (None of the six shows included in Peacock’s announcement will be exclusive to the platform.) As for the deal’s value, sources put the price tag at between $300 million and $400 million. Sources say Wolf — who has a massive ownership stake in all six shows — could stand to see that number rise should exclusivity to Peacock become an option.
Peacock is getting a lot of episodes here, but it’s an expensive and unusual deal to say the least.
While the nine-figure deal is noteworthy — it covers an eye-popping 1,580-plus episodes (and counting) — it’s less than the $500 million Peacock paid for The Office after a bidding war with Netflix. That’s because the deal is non-exclusive, with Hulu and Amazon sharing those same domestic rights to SVU. Seinfeld, for example, sold to Netflix for $500 million because, like Peacock and The Office, HBO Max and Friends, it’s exclusive to the platform. (Seinfeld, it’s worth noting, is the ultimate exclusive, with the streamer having global rights to the former NBC comedy.)
A non-exclusive deal for Law and Order means it’s likely to pop up on other services as well, but it’s part of an ever-expanding list of shows that will appear on Peacock. Deadline had a long list of shows, including a MacGruber show from Will Forte. And reports indicated on Thursday that Peacock is likely to have a freemium business model when it launches.
Peacock Free: Free, ad-supported option with more than 7,500 hours of programming.
Peacock Premium: Free to Comcast/Cox subs, $4.99 for everyone else. Ad-supported with full season Peacock originals, with more than 15,000 hours of content (Ad-free: +$5)
— Michael Schneider (@franklinavenue) January 16, 2020
It’s unclear where all of this content will land on that free/premium spectrum, but it’s clear Peacock is looking to have a huge library of shows and movies to offer people who already have a huge list of streaming options to choose from.