During its upfronts presentation Wednesday, Hulu announced a new multiyear deal with DreamWorks Animation, snatching some of the studio's content away from competitor Netflix.
Per the terms, Hulu will become the exclusive U.S. streaming home to future theatrical releases from the studio beginning in 2019, including upcoming franchise films “How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World,” “The Boss Baby 2” and “Trolls 2,” in the pay-one window. Hulu will also get DreamWorks Animation library films including “Shrek,” “Shrek 2” and “Shark Tale.”
Hulu will also be the home of a slate of new, original series inspired by characters from DreamWorks’ franchises and upcoming feature films. DreamWorks Animation Television will develop and produce the series, which will debut on Hulu beginning in 2020.
For Netflix, DreamWorks Animation signing with Hulu marks another blow to the service’s animation and kids programming after last year Disney announced that it was pulling its films from the service beginning in 2019 so it can add them to its upcoming Disney-branded streaming service.
For now though, Netflix and DreamWorks still have a full slate of animated series scheduled to debut in 2018, including a series based on “The Boss Baby” and a remake of 80s cartoon series “She-Ra.” And last week, Netflix and DreamWorks announced a deal extension in which Netflix will get a first look at DreamWorks animated series based on Universal IP, such as Netflix's upcoming animated series based on the "Fast & Furious" film franchise.
In the near future, though, DreamWorks will shift its attention to Hulu. Joel Stillerman, chief content officer at Hulu, used his time on stage during Hulu’s upfronts presentation to tout not only the DreamWorks deal but also Hulu’s landing exclusive SVOD rights to ABC drama “The Good Doctor.”
Hulu also announced a partnership with Blumhouse Television for “Into the Dark,” a year-round series of feature-length horror episodes, new upcoming series “Four Weddings and a Funeral” and “Ramy,” and a third season order for “The Handmaid’s Tale.”
This article was updated to mention Netflix's and DreamWorks' deal extension regarding Universal IP.