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Universal, HBO Renew Domestic Output Deal

Universal Pictures has renewed its domestic output deal with HBO, agreeing to a long-term extension with the pay cabler, Rick Finkelstein, vice chairman and COO, Universal Pictures, and Bruce Grivetti, president, film programming, HBO, announced Sunday.

The renewal will keep Universal Pictures' and Focus Features' films at HBO in the domestic pay TV network window into the next decade, extending the long-standing relationship between Universal Pictures and HBO, which dates back to 2003.

The deal is significant given last month's exclusive pact between Disney and Netflix, which will end the studio's existing pay TV deal with Starz starting in 2016.

"With HBO's far-reaching network of premium services, ranging from the traditional in-home experience to its mobile applications, we are pleased to continue this relationship and bring Universal and Focus Features' films to HBO subscribers for many years to come," said Finkelstein. "With our upcoming slate of films, HBO will continue to offer outstanding film content to their already vast library of movies, specials and award-winning original programming."

"We are very pleased to continue our strong partnership with HBO to bring Universal and Focus films to HBO's loyal subscriber base - evidence of the continued strength of Pay TV," said Frances Manfredi, president, NBCUniversal Cable & New Media Distribution

"Through our long and successful partnership with Universal Pictures, HBO has been able to deliver some of the biggest and best Hollywood theatricals to our subscribers," said Grivetti. "We are excited to extend our relationship with Universal Pictures and have now solidified HBO's position for first-run theatricals into the next decade."

The negotiations were led by Manfredi and Doris Casap, svp, film programming, HBO.