These days, there’s a TV show for just about every subject you can imagine, but Hulu has gained rights to the only show about nothing. At its 2015 Newfronts presentation, the streaming video platform announced a deal that, beginning in June, will bring all nine seasons of Seinfeld to viewers.
As Hulu Head of Content Craig Erwich explained, the platform’s viewers have long asked for episodes of Seinfeld. The sitcom was previously only available online in a limited capacity via Sony’s Crackle, but thanks to this deal, all 180 installments will come to Hulu. The streaming platform reportedly paid a significant sum for this privilege; Variety says the deal is worth nearly $180 million, about $1 million per episode. That figure did not sit well with comedian Billy Eichner, who presented his upcoming show Difficult People at Hulu’s NewFront. “They paid $130 million [sic] for Seinfeld and I couldn’t get an everything bagel on set,” quipped Eichner.
The Seinfeld deal is just one part of Hulu’s plan to bring a huge selection of coveted TV shows exclusively to its viewers. The streaming platform also announced a partnership with AMC through which it becomes the exclusive SVOD home for many of the network’s shows. For example, Hulu will be the exclusive streaming destination for Fear the Walking Dead, an upcoming companion series to AMC’s The Walking Dead. These content deals, when combined with Hulu’s previous pacts with companies like Twentieth Century Fox (for Empire), FX Productions (for Fargo and more), and Turner Broadcasting (for shows from its owned channels), make the platform the exclusive streaming home for a large number of critically-acclaimed TV shows.
In addition, Hulu continues to build up its library of originals. The platform’s Newfronts presentation is typically a star-studded affair, and this year was no different. Guests included Seth Meyers, Amy Poehler, James Franco, J.J. Abrams, Freddie Wong, and Jason Reitman, all of whom talking about the original series they will distribute on Hulu. Here, via a press release, is information about all the shows Hulu discussed:
Hulu Originals Slate
- Premiere date: 2016
- Cast: James Franco, Daniel Webber, Sarah Gadon, Chris Cooper, Cherry Jones, George MacKay, Lucy Fry, Leon Rippy and Brooklyn Sudano
- Crew: Executive Produced by J.J. Abrams, Stephen King, Bridget Carpenter and Bryan Burk
- Synopsis: Nine-hour limited event series based upon the best-selling 2011 novel written by Stephen King. 11/22/63 is a thriller in which high school history teacher Jake Epping travels back in time to prevent the assassination of President John F. Kennedy — but his mission is threatened by Lee Harvey Oswald, his falling in love and the past itself … which doesn’t want to be changed.
- Premiere date: Summer 2015
- Cast: Julie Klausner, Billy Eichner, Andrea Martin, James Urbaniak, Gabourey Sidibe, Cole Escola
- Crew: Executive Produced by Amy Poehler and Dave Becky. Created by Julie Klausner
- Synopsis: Billy Eichner and Julie Klausner star as best friends living in New York City. Their typical, irreverent behavior lands them in some very awkward situations.
- Premiere date: 2015
- Cast: Tommy Dewey, Michaela Watkins
- Crew: Executive Producer / Director Jason Reitman, Writer / Creator Zander Lehmann, Producer Helen Estabrook
- Synopsis: Casual follows the story of a dysfunctional family with a bachelor brother and his newly divorced sister. Together, they coach each other through the crazy world of dating (on-line and off), while living under one roof again and raising a teenager.
- Premiere date: Winter 2015
- Cast: TBD
- Crew: Executive Producer Jason Katims, Creator / Writer Jessica Goldberg, Producer Michelle Lee
- Synopsis: The 10-episode drama series examines a family at the center of a controversial faith–based movement struggling with relationships, marriage and power. Each hour-long episode will take an in-depth look at what it means to choose between the life we live and the life we want.
RocketJump: The Show
- Premiere date: Fall 2015
- Cast: Freddie Wong and the RocketJump team
- Crew: Created / Produced / Written by Freddie Wong and the RocketJump team
- Synopsis: Each half-hour episode of the comedy series will chronicle the filmmaking behind RocketJump’s newest short. The eight full episodes will be released on Hulu on a weekly basis and the newly-created shorts will premiere on Hulu.