In a major victory for Netflix, the streaming giant has acquired the global streaming rights to the hit 1990s sitcom, "Seinfeld."
All 180 episodes of the series will be available to stream on Netflix in the US and around the world starting in 2021. The Los Angeles Times first reported the acquisition Monday, which was followed by a Twitter announcement by Netflix.
Anonymous sources told The LA Times that the deal was worth more than what NBCUniversal paid for "The Office" rights ($500 million for five years) and what WarnerMedia paid for "Friends" ($425 million for five years), both of which were US-only deals. The deal Netflix struck with Sony Pictures Television for "Seinfeld" is also for five years, but is worldwide.
"'Seinfeld' is a one-of-a-kind, iconic, culture-defining show," Sony Pictures Television chairman Mike Hopkins said in a statement to The LA Times. "Now, 30 years after its premiere, 'Seinfeld' remains center stage. We're thrilled to be partnering with Netflix to bring this beloved series to current fans and new audiences around the globe."
The deal is a big win for Netflix after it lost both "Friends" and "The Office," which were its two most popular shows last year, according to data from analytics company Jumpshot. The former will be leaving the service at the end of this year for WarnerMedia's upcoming streaming platform, HBO Max, and the latter will leave Netflix in 2021 for NBCUniversal's yet-to-be-named service.
"Seinfeld" is currently streaming on Hulu in the US as part of a five-year deal that expires in 2021 and in some international territories on Amazon Prime Video.