When it comes to the revolution of producing original television-style content for the web, Hulu may be the best suited to actually make money.
The company announced today that it has reached an agreement to put one of its new original programs, Kevin Smith’s Spoilers movie review show, on traditional television sets. The distribution deal will allow the show to air on Bell Media-owned Canadian cable channel Space the same time each new episode premieres on Hulu’s website in the U.S.
The show itself, which premiered back in June, features film maker and geek icon Kevin Smith interviewing stars from summer blockbusters from an average fan’s perspective. It’s part of Hulu’s push for more original shows that are on par with those from the major TV networks, like Fox, ABC, NBC, CW, and Viacom.
Not only does the Spoilers deal mark Hulu’s first major international distribution deal, but it also shows the company’s commitment to gaining additional revenue through the traditional television platform. Unlike Netflix, which wants to attract an audience to exclusive content not found anywhere else for the $7.99 per month price, Hulu’s business model actually benefits from putting its original shows on multiple platforms. The programming is set up to have commercial breaks, and Hulu also has the experience of wheeling and dealing with major networks to make these deals happen.
Hulu has also committed to selling international distribution rights for its original show A Day in the Life, as Variety notes.
The real question will be whether Hulu originals ever show up on cable TV stations in the U.S. My guess is that most cable networks aren’t going to be interested in a TV-only deal that doesn’t include distribution through its online channels. But who knows what the future holds.
Image via Hulu