Sky, ViacomCBS Set to Launch Paramount+ in Western Europe in 2022

Comcast’s satellite TV operator Sky and ViacomCBS International are set to launch the Paramount+ subscription streaming video platform in Western Europe in 2022. The two companies Aug. 18 announced that Paramount+ will launch on Sky platforms in the U.K., Ireland, Italy, Germany, Switzerland and Austria as part of a new multiyear distribution agreement that also includes the extended carriage of ViacomCBS’s portfolio of pay-TV channels and the renewal of Sky as an ad sales partner in select markets.

Paramount+ is the latest third-party content app to come to Sky Q, adding more than 10,000 hours of content, and furthering Sky’s strategy congregating access to content in one place.

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“This transformative distribution deal is key to accelerating our global ambitions in streaming while also supporting Sky’s strategic objectives to better serve audiences with greater flexibility in how they consume our content across all platforms,” Raffaele Annecchino, CEO of ViacomCBS Networks International, said in a statement.

Upon launch, Sky Cinema subs will get Paramount+ included at no additional cost. As part of this partnership, Paramount Pictures’ feature films will remain available on Sky Cinema in the U.K. and will join Sky Cinema in Germany and Italy in 2022. All other Sky customers will be able to subscribe to Paramount+ as an add-on to their account.

Paramount+ will also be available direct-to-consumer in UK, Ireland, Italy and GSA through the Paramount+ app for iOS and Android and across supported connected TV devices and OTT platforms. Pricing and local content offering will be announced at a later date.

Movies that will become available through 2022 in the U.K., Ireland, Italy and other countries include a collection of scripted, exclusive Paramount+ originals and new takes on film franchises, including HaloThe Offer and the new “iCarly” series. As the international home of Showtime, the service will offer “The Man Who Fell to Earth,” “Ripley,” “Super Pumped” and “American Gigolo,” in addition to titles from ViacomCBS, such as “Kamp Koral: SpongeBob’s Under Years,” “Star Trek: Prodigy,” and “MTV Unplugged.” The service will also feature a collection of new premieres and classics from the “Mission: Impossible” and “Transformers” movie franchises.

“Paramount+ is an excellent service with a huge range of fantastic films and TV series, and our new, broader agreement with ViacomCBS will benefit both businesses,” said Stephen van Rooyen, EVP and chief executive for U.K. and Europe at Sky.

In addition, ViacomCBS and Sky reached a multiyear extension for carriage of ViacomCBS’s linear channels — including Comedy Central, MTV and Nickelodeon — in the U.K., Ireland, Italy and other European countries.

ViacomCBS also renewed its multiyear agreement with Sky as an ad sales partner for all platforms and channels in the U.K. and Italy. Sky Media will continue to handle ad sales across the ViacomCBS portfolio of channels, including Channel 5 in the UK, where ViacomCBS and Channel 5 will benefit from Sky Media’s innovation in addressable advertising.

Sony’s ‘Peter Rabbit 2’ Atop U.K. Home Entertainment Chart for Third Week

What a difference packaged media makes.

Sony Pictures Home Entertainment’s Peter Rabbit 2: The Runaway finished No. 1 on the Official Film Chart in the U.K. following the sequel’s release on DVD and Blu-ray Disc. With 87,000 unit sales, Sony’s family feature finished ahead of all other releases on digital and physical formats for the week ending Aug. 11.

Peter Rabbit 2 streets on disc in the U.S. on Aug. 24.

Universal Pictures Home Entertainment’s The Croods finished No. 2, while Warner’s Space Jam was No. 3. The Peter Rabbit 1 & 2 collection moved up to No. 4, while Universal’s Oscar-winning Promising Young Woman moved up to No. 5 position.

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At No. 6, the week’s highest new entry came from Disney’s Luca, about a boy named Luca and his best friend Alberto, who spend an unforgettable summer having the time of their lives with their new friend Giulia. But their fun is threatened by a pretty big secret: They’re actually sea monsters from a different world just below the water’s surface.

Warner’s Birds of Prey climbed two spots to No. 7, while Zack Snyder’s Justice League dropped four spots to No. 8, and Tom & Jerry fell three spots to No. 9. Finally, Godzilla vs. Kong rounded out the Top 10 releases of the week.

The Official Film Chart Top 10 – Aug. 11, 2021

Rank Previous Week Movie Distributor
1 1 PETER RABBIT 2 SONY PICTURES
2 2 THE CROODS UNIVERSAL/DREAMWORKS
3 3 SPACE JAM WARNER
4 5 PETER RABBIT 1 & 2 SONY PICTURES
5 10 PROMISING YOUNG WOMAN UNIVERSAL
6 NEW LUCA DISNEY
7 9 BIRDS OF PREY … WARNER
8 4 ZACK SNYDER’S JUSTICE LEAGUE WARNER
9 6 TOM & JERRY (2021) WARNER
10 7 GODZILLA VS. KONG WARNER

© Official Charts Company 2021

U.K. Tops 100M Digital Movie Sales, Led by ‘The Greatest Showman’

The United Kingdom recorded its 100 millionth digital movie sale through June 23, according to the British Association for Screen Entertainment, the country’s home entertainment trade group. The milestone was tabulated by the Official Chart Company, which has been tracking digital movie sales in the U.K. since 2016.

“This is a huge moment of celebration for the home entertainment category as it shows just how much audiences have embraced the freshest ways to grow their film library, with a number that translates to around five film downloads per household in the U.K.,” Liz Bales, CEO of BASE and DEGE: The Digital Entertainment Group Europe, said in a statement. “It’s also so exciting to see digital formats snapping at the heels of the nation’s long held favorite, the DVD, and sister premium formats Blu-ray Disc and 4K UHD Blu-ray. Today’s news, coupled with the billions of physical film sales since the inceptions of those formats, continue to demonstrate just how much audiences love watching their favorite films at home as well as in cinemas”.

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The top-selling digital release was 20th Century Film’s The Greatest Showman, which has generated 1.1 million unit sales. It was the first film to ever reach 500,000 “Download & Keep” sales, and was the first — and only — film to surpass the 1 million mark on the digital format.

The rock group Queen biopic Bohemian Rhapsody took the second spot, followed closely by Disney/Marvel’s Avengers: Endgame — which became the fastest-selling digital film of all time after selling more than 335,000 digital downloads in its first week back in 2019. Its predecessor Avengers: Infinity War landed at No. 4.

Musical films were among the most popular with the U.K. public, with five of the top 10 musically influenced. Family favorite musicals  Moana (No. 5), Frozen 2 (No. 6) and Trolls (No. 7) also appeared in the top tier.

Action, adventure and sci-fi sequels were also among the U.K.’s favorite genre on digital, as Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom (Universal Pictures Home Entertainment) and Star Wars: The Force Awakens landed at No. 8 and No. 9 respectively. The 2000 Dr. Seuss adaptation How The Grinch Stole Christmas, starring Jim Carrey rounded out the chart at No. 10.

The U.K.’s Official Top 10 biggest films on digital download

Position Movie
1 The Greatest Showman
2 Bohemian Rhapsody 
3 Avengers: Endgame
4 Avengers: Infinity War
5 Moana
6 Frozen 2
7 Trolls
8 Jurassic World:  Fallen Kingdom
9 Star Wars: The Force Awakens
10 How the Grinch Stole Christmas (2000)

© Official Charts Company 2021

‘Godzilla vs. Kong’ Fights to No. 1 on U.K. Home Entertainment Chart

Warner’s Godzilla vs. Kong battled to No. 1 on the U.K. home entertainment’s Official Film Chart through June 9, stomping up two places from its No. 3 debut the previous week.

On digital downloads only the movie bested two recent releases, former No. 1 Zack Snyder’s Justice League (No. 2) — the biggest title of the week on physical formats — and Tom & Jerry at No. 3.

The 2018 suspense thriller A Quiet Place climbed 15 spots to No. 4, landing in the top 10 for the very first time. Starring John Krasinski and Emily Blunt, alongside Millicent Simmonds and Noah Jupe, the critically acclaimed film sees a new U.K. chart peak following the release of its sequel released in cinemas last week.

Meanwhile, Disney’s Raya and the Last Dragon dropped one spot to No. 5, while Lionsgate’s dystopian action film Chaos Walking climbed one spot to No. 6; Wonder Woman 1984 (Warner) landed at No. 7; and Sony Pictures Home Entertainment’s Peter Rabbit is down two spots to No. 8.

Arnold Schwarzenegger’s 1990 sci-fi classic Total Recall re-entered the chart at No. 9, marking a new peak for the film and its first stint in the top 10 thanks to a surge of digital downloads. Finally, Sony Pictures’ Spider-Man: Homecoming rounds off the countdown at No. 10.

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The Official Film Chart Top 10 – June 9, 2021

Rank Previous Week Movie Studio
1 3 Godzilla v Kong Warner
2 1 Zack Snyder’s Justice League Warner
3 2 Tom & Jerry (2021) Warner
4 19 A Quiet Place Paramount
5 4 Raya and the Last Dragon Walt Disney
6 7 Chaos Walking Lionsgate
7 5 Wonder Woman 1984 Warner
8 6 Peter Rabbit Sony Pictures
9 Return Total Recall Studiocanal
10 8 Spider-Man: Homecoming Sony Pictures

© Official Charts Company 2021

British Anti-Piracy Website Adds Disney+ Content

FindAnyFilm.com, working with Disney U.K., June 1 announced it is integrating Disney+ movies and TV shows into its listings, enabling users to search Disney content across all formats — from theatrical screenings to DVD/Blu-ray Disc, digital transactional and subscription streaming VOD. 

The website is operated by the Industry Trust for IP Awareness, a home entertainment organization aimed at thwarting piracy of movies and TV shows on behalf of industry partners, including Hollywood studios.

The U.K. reportedly ranked No. 8 among countries with residents frequenting piracy websites, including 5.75 billion visits in 2018, according to data from MUSO, a London-based data tracking service. The U.S. ranked No. 1 with 17.4 billion visits.

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FindAnyFilm.com contends that informed consumers will undermine piracy. The website says it provides an essential call to action for all anti-piracy outreach. Using the site ensures that consumers in the U.K. can be certain that the content they access comes from a legitimate source, avoiding the legal risks inherent in accessing pirated content.

“The Industry Trust works to keep consumers safe with education about the risks of infringing content, and FindAnyFilm acts as the ideal call to action for all anti-piracy outreach,” Liz Bales, CEO of The Industry Trust and British Association for Screened Entertainment, said in a statement. “Building on the collaborative relationship between The Walt Disney Company and the Industry Trust, Disney+ is a vital addition to the site’s SVOD offerings, which serves our shared goal of ensuring that FindAnyFilm.com is the ultimate destination for consumers to search, find and watch content safely.”

As the only official industry-approved search, find and watch tool for U.K. consumers, FindAnyFilm allows users to access content across all genres, from blockbuster movies to cult classic boxsets. With Disney+ titles now included, consumers benefit from access films and TV shows, including Star content. 

FindAnyFilm.com includes U.K. movie theaters, online physical retailers, including Amazon, Zavvi and Argos, digital platforms such as iTunes, Amazon Prime Video, Sky Store and Google, as well as live TV listings. Users can see what content is available on the Disney+ service by clicking the digital tab on their selected title and finding the Disney+ option.  

Disney’s ‘Raya and the Last Dragon’ No. 1 on U.K. Home Entertainment Chart

Disney’s Raya and the Last Dragon ranked No. 1 in its debut on the Official Film Chart in the U.K. May 26 following its release on DVD & Blu-ray Disc — more than doubling the sales of its closest competition.

In the film, viewers find themselves in a re-imagined world named Kumandra, where humans and dragons once lived together before sinister monsters threatened the land and the dragons sacrificed themselves for humanity. More than 500 years later the monsters, known as Druun, have returned, and it’s up to a young warrior named Raya (Kelly Marie Tran) to track down the last dragon and stop them for good.

At No. 2, live action worlds collide in Warner’s Tom & Jerry, which makes a strong first-week performance on digital downloads only, while Wonder Woman 1984 moved down one spot to No. 3.

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The previous week’s No. 1 The Little Things dropped to No. 4, landing just ahead of Keanu Reeves in ’90s action classic Speed, which sped up 27 spots to No. 5 following to a new release on 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray.

Sony Pictures Home Entertainment’s Peter Rabbit rose four spots to No. 6, and former chart topper Zack Snyder’s Justice League (Warner) fell four spots to No. 7.

Shark attack thriller Great White made its debut at No. 8, while Godzilla: King of the Monsters rose six spots to No. 9. Finally, Spider-Man: Far From Home rounded off the week at No. 10.

The Official Film Chart Top 10 – May 26, 2021

Rank Previous Week Title Studio
1 New Raya and the Last Dragon Disney
2 New Tom & Jerry Warner
3 2 Wonder Woman 1984 Warner
4 1 The Little Things Warner
5 32 Speed 20th Century
6 10 Peter Rabbit Sony Pictures
7 3 Zack Snyder’s Justice League Warner
8 New Great White Altitude Spirit
9 15 Godzilla: King of the Monsters Warner
10 5 Spider-Man: Far From Home Sony Pictures

© Official Charts Company 2021

Warner’s ‘The Little Things’ Tops U.K. Weekly Home Entertainment Chart

Warner Bros. finished an impressive week in U.K. home entertainment, securing 50% of the top 10 selling titles for the week ended May 19.

The studio’s The Little Things, starring Denzel Washington, Jared Leto and Rami Malek, made a No. 1 debut on the Official Film Chart, leading the list of the U.K.’s most popular films as the week’s biggest release on DVD and Blu-ray Disc.

In the film, deputy sheriff Joe Deacon (Washington) is sent to Los Angeles for a quick evidence-gathering assignment — but as he teams up with detective Jim Baxter (Malek) to help solve a serial killer case in the city, disturbing secrets from his past are unearthed that could threaten more than the case.

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Wonder Woman 1984 held on for another week at No. 2, as three-week chart topper Zack Snyder’s Justice League dropped to No. 3. DC animated adventure Justice Society: World War II launched at No. 4, knocking Spider-Man: Far From Home down one spot to No. 5.

Crime thriller The Virtuoso, starring recent Oscar winner Anthony Hopkins, debuted at No. 6, landing just ahead of soccer star Eric Cantona’s produced, Man United documentary, The United Way, at No. 7. Venom returned to the Official Film Chart at No. 8, and Tenet finished at No. 9.

Finally, 2018 comedy adventure Peter Rabbit jumped back to No. 10, thanks to consumers catching up with the character ahead of the release of sequel Peter Rabbit 2, which is in U.K. cinemas now.

The Official Film Chart Top 10 – May 19, 2021

Rank Previous Week Movie Title Distributor
1 New The Little Things Warner
2 2 Wonder Woman 1984 Warner
3 1 Zach Snyder’s Justice League Warner
4 New Justice Society: World War II Warner
5 4 Spider-Man: Far From Home Sony Pictures
6 New The Virtuoso Lionsgate
7 New The United Way Spirit Entertainment
8 Return Venom Sony Pictures
9 8 Tenet Warner
10 26 Peter Rabbit  Sony Pictures

© Official Charts Company 2021

‘Zack Snyder’s Justice League’ Finishes Second Week Atop U.K. Home Entertainment Chart

Warner Bros.’ Zack Snyder’s Justice League held its grip atop the U.K.’s Official Film Chart in home entertainment for a second period ending May 5 — driven by digital downloads. The title held off several other Warner/DC movies, including Wonder Woman 1984 (No. 2), 2016’s prequel Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice (No. 3) and Oscar winner Joker (No. 5).

The week’s highest new entry at No. 4 was British comedy Blithe Spirit, starring Judi Dench, Dan Stevens, Leslie Mann and Judi Dench. A writer suffering from writer’s block attends a séance, but the medium accidentally summons the spirit of his first wife — leading to an increasingly complex love triangle with his current wife.

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At No. 6 was two-time Oscar winner Judas and the Black Messiah, starring LaKeith Stanfield and featuring an Oscar-winning performance from Daniel Kaluuya for his portrayal of Fred Hampton, the chairman of the Illinois chapter of the Black Panther Party.

Japanese classic cult shocker Battle Royale debuted at No. 7 following the release of a new limited-edition 4K UHD Blu-ray Disc boxed set. The Greatest Showman dropped to No. 8, while Sony Pictures’ perennial charter Jumanji: The Next Level climbed 21 spots back to No. 9, and Universal’s Let Him Go rounded out the chart.

The Official Film Chart Top 10 – May 5, 2021

Rank Previous
Week
Title Distributor
1 1 Zack Snyder’s Justice League Warner
2 2 Wonder Woman 1984 Warner
3 Return Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice Warner
4 New Blithe Spirit (2021) Universal
5 4 Joker Warner
6 New Judas & the Black Messiah Warner
7 New Battle Royale Arrow Films
8 5 The Greatest Showman 20th Century Home Entertainment
9 30 Jumanji: The Next Level Sony Pictures
10 8 Let Him Go Universal

© Official Charts Company 2021

‘Zack Snyder’s Justice League’ Bows No. 1 on U.K. Home Entertainment Chart

Warner’s Zack Snyder’s Justice League went straight to No. 1 on the U.K.’s Official Film Chart of home entertainment releases through April 28 — driven by digital downloads only access.

The new release produced 9,000 unit sales ahead of its closest competition, fellow DCEU film and former six-week chart topper Wonder Woman 1984, at No. 2. Originally released in March on Sky Cinema, Zack Snyder’s Justice League is an extended cut of 2017 film Justice League and clocks in at a running time of four hours.

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Its release followed a long-running fan campaign to release the ‘Snyder Cut’ of Justice League after Joss Whedon took over directing the film’s theatrical version when Snyder departed following a family bereavement.

Meanwhile, Nicolas Cage comedy-horror Willy’s Wonderland (Signature Entertainment) debuted at No. 3. Cage stars as a janitor tricked into working at a condemned family fun amusement park, where he’s forced into a fight for survival against the center’s possessed animatronic mascots.

Warner’s Oscar-winner Joker landed at No. 4; The Greatest Showman (20th Century Home Entertainment) jumped seven spots to No. 5;and Disney/Pixar’s two-time Oscar winner Soul dropped four spots to No. 6. Godzilla: King of the Monsters (Warner) fell to No. 7, while Universal Pictures Home Entertainment’s Let Him Go rose one spot to No. 8 in its second week of retail release.

At No. 9, cult slasher collection Urban Legend Trilogy (88 Films) made its debut following the release of a limited-edition Blu-ray Disc boxed set of Urban Legend, Urban Legends: Final Cut and Urban Legends: Bloody Mary. Finally, Sony Pictures Home Entertainment’s Spider-Man: Far From Home landed at No. 10.

The Official Film Chart Top 10 – April 28, 2021

Rank Previous Week Title Studio
1 New Zach Snyder’s Justice League Warner
2 1 Wonder Woman 1984 Warner
3 New Willy’s Wonderland Signature Entertainment
4 3 Joker Warner
5 12 The Greatest Showman 20th Century
6 2 Soul Disney/Pixar
7 4 Godzilla- King of The Monsters Warner
8 9 Let Him Go Universal Pictures
9 New Urban Legend Trilogy 88 Films
10 6 Spider-Man: Far From Home Sony Pictures

 

‘Wonder Woman’ Holds Off ‘Godzilla’ on U.K. Home Entertainment Chart

Wonder Woman 1984 won another week (through April 14) atop the United Kingdom’s official home entertainment film chart following a tough battle with Godzilla: King of the Monsters. Both titles helped Warner dominate the chart with seven-out-of-the-top-10 movies sold on digital and physical formats.

WW84 made it another big week for packaged media with majority sales across DVD, Blu-ray Disc and 4K UHD Blu-ray helping the movie stay No. 1 for the fifth consecutive week. The DC superheroine held off competition from Godzilla: King of the Monsters, the biggest release on digital formats over the past seven days, following the release of Warner’s Godzilla vs. Kong on PVOD, seeing an uplift of 34% on the previous week’s digital figures.

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Disney and Pixar’s Soul dropped to No. 3, edging out Warner’s perennial charter Joker, which climbed 15 spots to No. 4, as Sony Pictures Home Entertainment’s Spider-Man: Far From Home finished No. 5.

The first in the Wizarding World series, Warner’s Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone (known in America as Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone) jumped seven spots to No. 6, its highest ever placing on the Official Film Chart, and first time ever in the Top 10; Scoob! (Warner) fell to No. 7, while Harry Potter: The Complete Collection rose to No. 8.

Roald Dahl’s The Witches dropped one spot to No. 9, and Trolls World Tour finishes No. 10 after dropping four places.

The Official Film Chart Top 10 – April, 14, 2021

Rank Previous Week Title Studio
1 1 Wonder Woman 1984 Warner
2 3 Godzilla: King of the Monsters Warner
3 2 Soul Disney
4 19 Joker Warner
5 4 Spider-Man: Far From Home Sony Pictures
6 13 Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone Warner
7 5 Scoob! Warner
8 10 Harry Potter: The Complete  Collection Warner
9 8 Roald Dahl’s The Witches Warner
10 6 Trolls World Tour DreamWorks Animation

© Official Charts Company 2021