* 28-day delay on new releases to Netflix customers
* Twentieth Century Fox deal includes streaming license
* Netflix to get more Universal films to stream
(Adds details, background)
April 9 (Reuters) - U.S. DVD rental company Netflix Inc (NFLX.O) has reached deals with movie studios Twentieth Century Fox and Universal Studios that will allow it to rent DVDs and Blu-ray discs 28 days after new releases go on sale in stores.
The deal with News Corp’s (NWSA.O) Twentieth Century Fox also involves a first-time streaming license for Fox TV shows, the two companies said in a joint statement.
Netflix and Universal said that under their deal, Netflix would get significantly more units and better in-stock levels from Universal after the four-week period and get access to more of the studio’s movies for customers to stream.
With the 28-day delay, Netflix will be able to rent James Cameron’s worldwide blockbuster “Avatar” to its customers from May 20, after its April 22 DVD/Blu-ray release date.
The first release covered under the new agreement with Universal is the comedy “It’s Complicated,” which will be released in stores on April 27.
Netflix Chief Executive Reed Hastings said in October studios were wrestling with declining DVD sales as the rental market has been modestly growing and that some studios are considering introducing a DVD retail sales-only window for a few weeks. [ID:nN2240509]
Netflix, Universal Studios and Twentieth Century Fox were not immediately available for comment.
Reporting by Sakthi Prasad in Bangalore