via press release:
WGN America's Powerful New Drama Manhattan Debuts to Rave Reviews; Lionsgate Reaches Ground-Breaking Deal for Hulu Plus to Become Exclusive Streaming Home for New Series From Lionsgate, Skydance Television and Tribune Studios
SANTA MONICA, Calif., LOS ANGELES, and CHICAGO, July 28, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Coming off rave reviews surrounding last night's debut of the powerful new drama "Manhattan" on WGN America, Lionsgate (NYSE: LGF), a premier next generation global content leader, and Hulu have announced a ground-breaking deal for the new series to stream exclusively on Hulu Plus the day after its WGN America Sunday night airing, the two companies announced today. Hulu has acquired exclusive subscription video-on-demand (SVOD) rights to the critically-acclaimed new series produced by Lionsgate, Skydance Television and Tribune Studios.
Beginning today, new episodes of season one will be available every Monday following WGN America's Sunday night airing, with all 13 episodes of season one available on Hulu Plus upon the completion of the season on air. Hulu will also make the five most recently broadcast episodes of season one available on the free, ad-supported Hulu on a three day delay.
"After seeing the episodes, and enjoying every minute, I knew this series represented the kind of high-quality, addictive programming that we strive to bring to Hulu," said Craig Erwich, Senior Vice President, Head of Content at Hulu. "That's why this deal marks the first time that Hulu has committed to a series before a single episode had even aired."
"The speed with which we were able to launch a second window deal is a testament to three factors -- the willingness of our entrepreneurial partner Hulu to join us in embracing new approaches to our business, the tremendous quality of our ensemble cast, creator Sam Shaw and director Thomas Schlamme, and the enormous critical acclaim with which the series has been received," said Kevin Beggs, Chairman of Lionsgate Television Group. "Manhattan is shaping up to become another proud entry in our tradition of ground-breaking television series with enduring value."
"We're delighted to extend a partnership with Hulu that should help further expand the audience for this deserving show," said Lionsgate President of Worldwide Television & Digital Distribution Jim Packer. "We believe that this innovative arrangement will be a win/win/win for Lionsgate, our partners and, most of all, our audiences."
Lionsgate and Hulu are already partnered on the Hulu Original Deadbeat, which is currently streaming on Hulu and has already been renewed for a second season.
Manhattan has been greeted by an explosion of critical acclaim in The New York Times ("cleverly imagined"), Time Magazine ("a mature, thoughtful drama"), Entertainment Weekly ("a megawatt start to a show crackling with megaton ambition"), The Hollywood Reporter ("WGN America's gripping, strongly acted new series is well worth seeking out"), St. Louis Post Dispatch ("riveting -- the kind of series that is so good it lifts a network into a whole new tier") and USA Today ("terrific John Benjamin Hickey"), among many others.
Fueled by mystery and suspense, "Manhattan" is set in the 1940s in a town whose very existence is classified. Frank Winter (John Benjamin Hickey) and his team of brilliant but flawed scientists have been recruited to work on a project even they could know nothing about until their arrival. Once inside "The Hill," a middle-class bubble on a dusty foothill in the New Mexico desert, they begin to sense that this is no ordinary assignment. In fact, they are living in a town with the world's highest concentration of geniuses, yet it can't be found on any map—a place where men and women are torn between duty and their moral values, husbands and wives conceal the truth from each other and their families, the military keeps secrets from the scientists they chaperone, and the scientists keep secrets from each other.
Created and written by Sam Shaw ("Masters of Sex") and directed by Emmy Award-winning director Thomas Schlamme ("The West Wing"), "Manhattan" is executive produced by Sam Shaw, Thomas Schlamme, David Ellison, Dana Goldberg, Marcy Ross and Dustin Thomason. Filmed on location in New Mexico, the series is produced by Lionsgate Television, Skydance Television and Tribune Studios.
Lionsgate is a leading global entertainment company with a strong and diversified presence in motion picture production and distribution, television programming and syndication, home entertainment, digital distribution, new channel platforms and international distribution and sales. Lionsgate currently has over 30 television shows on more than 20 networks spanning its primetime production, distribution and syndication businesses, including such critically-acclaimed hits as the multiple Emmy Award-winning Mad Men andNurse Jackie, the comedy Anger Management, the network series Nashville, the syndication success The Wendy Williams Show and the critically-acclaimed hit series Orange is the New Black.
Its feature film business has been fueled by such recent successes as the blockbuster first two installments of The Hunger Gamesfranchise, the first installment of the recently-launched Divergent franchise, Now You See Me, Kevin Hart: Let Me Explain, Warm Bodies, The Expendables 2, The Possession, Sinister, Roadside Attractions' Mud and Pantelion Films' breakout hit Instructions Not Included, the highest-grossing Spanish-language film ever released in the U.S.
Lionsgate's home entertainment business is an industry leader in box office-to-DVD and box office-to-VOD revenue conversion rate. Lionsgate handles a prestigious and prolific library of approximately 15,000 motion picture and television titles that is an important source of recurring revenue and serves as the foundation for the growth of the Company's core businesses. The Lionsgate and Summit brands remain synonymous with original, daring, quality entertainment in markets around the world. (www.lionsgate.com)
Hulu is an online TV service whose mission is to help people find and enjoy the world's premium content when, where and how they want. As we pursue this mission, we aspire to create a service that users, advertisers and content owners unabashedly love.