Miramax Movies Coming to Netflix

As if Netflix (NFLX) couldn’t grow any larger.  

In another impressing showing of the company’s ability to scoop up digital licenses, Netflix said on Tuesday it inked a multi-year deal to stream hundreds of Miramax films.

Starting in June, Netflix will offer several hundred Miramax titles through its instant-viewing service, with dozens of movies being added on a rotating basis. The offer marks the first time Miramax titles have become available through a digital-subscription service.

Through the partnership, Netflix claims its library gains a variety of movies that collectively have earned 284 Academy Award nominations across 83 films, with 68 wins. The studio is responsible for iconic movies such as “The English Patient” and “Shakespeare in Love,” both “best picture” films, as well as “Pulp Fiction,” “Kill Bill,” “Good Will Hunting,” and “The Piano.”

Financial terms of the deal weren’t disclosed. The Wall Street Journal previously reported that Miramax and Netflix were close to a five-year deal worth more than $100 million.

Netflix has been looking to transition to a streaming-only business model in an effort to save on shipping costs, but its streaming service still offers a smaller selection than the traditional red envelope DVDs.

Its efforts to capture digital licenses for the service have helped the company snag Web traffic from search engines, according to a new study by Sandvine. The study found that in North America, Netflix has 29.7% of peak downstream traffic and has grown to become the largest source of Internet traffic overall.

Its growing share of the market is evidence that its services are taking hold in households across the U.S. and Canada. The company had 23.6 million subscribers as of the end of March.

I love Netflix and it keeps getting better!

Rewrite Underway for the Jack Ryan Reboot Starring Chris Pine


David Koepp to Rewrite the Jack Ryan Reboot Starring Chris Pine

Are you attempting to get a big budget franchise screenplay into fighting shape with a rewrite or two?  Odds are, you’ll try get David Koepp to take a crack at it.  Koepp is one of the most high profile screenwriters around, famous for smoothing out the rough edges on potential blockbuster scripts.  He’s credited with contributions to Jurassic Park, Spider-Man, Angels & Demons, War of the Worlds, Mission: Impossible, and Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull.  Now, Paramount has hired him to sort out their lingering script issues with the as-yet untitled Jack Ryan reboot starring Chris Pine.

The studio recently rescheduled the film, swapping places with Pine’s current science fiction franchise.  The original plan involved filming the Jack Ryan adventure before Pine returned to the role of Captain James Tiberius Kirk in the Star Trek sequel, which will shoot in this fall, likely under the direction of JJ Abrams.  Though that plan could still have worked out, dissatisfaction with the screenplay led Paramount to delay the reboot in order to beef up the story.

Deadline reports that David Koepp will get to work rebooting Ryan once he has completed work on his latest directorial feature, Premium Rush, starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Michael Shannon.  Their article also confirms that Jack Bender, who directed 34 episodes of ABC’s Lost, is still on board to direct the origin story, which is tentatively scheduled to being production in January.

Koepp is the latest in a string of writers to tackle the material, starting with Hossein Amini.  After Amini, Adam Cozad was tasked with rejiggering his spec script Dubai into a Ryan-centric espionage tale.  Anthony Peckham took a crack at it, then Cozad was brought back.  Oscar winner Steve Zaillian, who wrote Clear and Present Danger and made an uncredited contribution to Patriot Games, was briefly on board, but he quickly exited the project.

Rather than simply rushing the film to meet a release date, the emphasis is being placed firmly on kickstarting a new franchise.  It won’t be the first time Paramount has dusted off the heroic CIA analyst first played by Alec Baldwin in The Hunt For Red October; in 2002, Ben Affleck played a younger version of Ryan in The Sum of All Fears.  Neither actor is as associated with the role as Harrison Ford, who played him twice in Patriot Games and Clear and Present Danger.