Internet video giant YouTube has announced it is launching a film rental service in the UK after sealing deals with the major studios. Users will now be able to rent more than 1,000 films from both Hollywood and British film studios to watch online.
The Google-owned site announced yesterday that it has signed agreements with major film studios such as Sony Pictures Home Entertainment, Warner Bros, Universal, Lionsgate, and Entertainment One as well as independent British studios such as Revolver Entertainment and Metrodome.
In a blogpost, the site said that new releases would be available alongside older films. The post revealed that The Dark Knight and Reservoir Dogs, Hanna, Fast Five, and Red Riding Hood would be among those available, as well as Monty Python’s The Meaning of Life and Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels.
A spokesman said yesterday that new releases would be priced from £3.49 with older fims costing £2.49 or more for HD versions. “Customers will have 30 days to begin watching their rental. Once they start watching the film they will typically have 48 hours to finish,” she said, adding that the films are streamed online, rather than being downloaded, meaning that customers will need to be connected to the internet to watch.
Patrick Walker, Senior Director of Content Partnerships for YouTube, EMEA, said, “We’re happy to be working with partners of all sizes to bring more content to YouTube users. In addition to the clips, user created and long form TV content our British users know and love, now movie lovers can find full-length feature films on YouTube in the UK.”
The site first began offering a film rental service in the US in May. That was later extended to Canada in September and now Britain.
“Britain has a long history of cinema, starting from the first moving pictures being developed on celluloid film in the UK. Now British film buffs can be part of the digital revolution too, at youtube.com/movies,” said Matteo Vallone, YouTube Business Product Manager.