Netflix has added another partner to its growing “Watch Instantly” option. IFC Entertainment has signed on with the online movie rental service, giving Netflix rights to stream 53 films online including John Sayles’ “The Brother From Another Planet” and Errol Morris’ “The Thin Blue Line”.
The films will be available beginning Nov. 20.
“We’re excited to give their customers instant access to this wide-ranging collection of independent film,” said Lisa Schwartz, executive vice president for IFC Entertainment. “Our top priority is to make independent film available to a wider audience and this partnership further underscores that commitment."
Other films covered in the agreement include Christopher Nolan’s first outing “Following” and Joe Swanberg’s “Nights and Weekends”. Several foreign language titles, including “Brothers,” “Sex is Comedy” and “Solo Con Tu Pareja” will also be enabled for instant streaming.
The “Watch Instantly” service instantly streams over 17,000 films and TV shows to computers and a growing number of other platforms, including Tivo, video game consoles (both the Xbox 360 and PS3), Internet-enabled TVs from Sony and LG and select Blu-Ray DVD players from Samsung and Insignia.
It has quickly become a popular service for the company – and one that has helped it dramatically increase its member base. In October, Netflix noted that the relationship with Microsoft, which began in September 2008, has helped it add 2.4 million subscribers. That represented the biggest burst of growth in the service's 10-year history.
The company is in the midst of plans to introduce the streaming option overseas. Currently, 42 percent of its U.S. customers streamed at least 15 minutes of video in the third quarter – almost double the number that did so a year ago.
IFC isn’t the first entertainment conglomerate to sign with Netflix. In October 2008, the company struck a deal with Starz Play, adding roughly 1,000 films that were playing simultaneously on the pay cable station. And in August, ABC signed on to stream some of its biggest shows, including “Lost” and “Grey’s Anatomy,” through Netflix.