Whovians may need to shell out for a new streaming service, as Doctor Who is heading to HBO Max. The WarnerMedia streaming service, which was announced recently, is set to launch in early 2020 and they are currently trying to build a library of appealing content that can attract subscribers. That now includes all eleven seasons of the current run of the legendary British sci-fi series.
According to a new report, WarnerMedia has cut a deal that has given them the exclusive streaming rights to Doctor Who. This includes the current seasons and will extend to season 12 and beyond, shortly after new episodes air on BBC America in the States. As a point of clarity, this does not include all of the classic episodes of the series prior to the 2005 revival. Kevin Reilly, chief content officer for HBO Max and president of TNT, TBS and truTV, had this to say in a statement.
"'Doctor Who' is one of television's all-time, most beloved series, on both sides of the pond, and we are happy to be the exclusive streaming stewards for this BBC gem. Another series to further define the high-quality content experience consumers can expect from HBO Max."
As part of the deal, HBO Max will also have the rights to stream other very popular BBC shows, such as the original version of The Office, Top Gear, Luther and The Honorable Woman, amongst hundreds of other episodes of British television. These shows join a lineup that already includes Friends and The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, as well as a ton of popular HBO shows such as The Sopranos, Sex and the City, Veep and Game of Thrones. Nigel Gaines, interim president of BBC Studios Americas, had this to say.
"As any 'Doctor Who' fan knows, the iconic TARDIS is 'bigger on the inside,' and it's a good thing because the TARDIS is about to welcome a whole new slew of fans coming to the show through this deal with HBO Max. HBO Max's ambitious content line-up is the perfect complement to the 'Doctor Who' global franchise, in addition to some of our most award-winning and game-changing UK dramas and comedies."
Doctor Who is one of the longest-running shows in history, having originally kicked off its epic run in 1963. However, the show was given new life when Steven Moffat brought it back in 2005 with Christopher Eccleston as the Ninth Doctor. Most recently, Jodie Whittaker made history by becoming the first ever female Doctor, taking over for Peter Capaldi.
HBO Max will enter an increasingly crowded streaming landscape that is currently dominated by Netflix. Also coming down the pipeline is Disney+ this November, as well as Apple+ and NBC's currently unnamed service. The market is also flooded with niche, boutique services like the horror-themed Shudder or DC Universe. HBO Max is quickly putting together a nice catalog, but it's not going to come cheap, as it's expected to run roughly $17 per month. This news was previously reported by Variety.