Amazon adds Catastrophe, White Queen to streaming line-up

DetailsMichelle Clancy | 31 January 2015

Amazon is continuing to hit original and exclusive streaming video content hard, adding new series and pledging more investment. The company has announced that it has added the comedy Catastrophe to its line-up of Amazon original series, along with exclusive access to Starz’ The White Queen mini series.

“When we raised the price of Prime membership last year, we were confident that customers would continue to find it the best bargain in the history of shopping. The data is in and customers agree — on a base of tens of millions, worldwide paid membership grew 53% last year: 50% in the US and even a bit faster outside the US,” said Jeff Bezos, founder and CEO of Amazon, in the fourth-quarter earnings statement.

“Prime is a one-of-a-kind, all-you-can-eat, physical-digital hybrid — in 2014 alone we paid billions of dollars for Prime shipping and invested $1.3 billion in Prime Instant Video. We’ll continue to work hard for our Prime members.”

Catastrophe is a half-hour comedy set in London about an Irish woman and American man struggling to start a relationship after their clumsy lust leads to pregnancy. Already a critical hit in the UK, Catastrophe is an Avalon Television production with co-producers Birdbath Productions and Merman. The series will be available exclusively for Prime members in the US this spring and will come to Prime Instant Video in the UK later this year.

Meanwhile, a content licensing agreement with Starz Digital Media will make Prime Instant Video the exclusive online-only subscription streaming home in the US for The White Queen — the Golden Globe and Emmy-nominated original mini series based on the historical novels from Philippa Gregory's New York Times best-selling series, The Cousins War. It’s set during England’s War of the Roses and tells the story of three women vying for England’s throne during one of the most tumultuous times in the country’s history.

“With this agreement, we can bring even more viewers into the world of Philippa Gregory’s storytelling and introduce Prime members to the quality original programming found on Starz,” said Mara Winokur, SVP of digital at Starz. “Amazon is a great platform to showcase The White Queen and we’re excited that this new agreement allows us to continue to grow our relationship with Amazon, while expanding exposure to one of our miniseries from the growing library of programming found on the Starz channels and services. The miniseries will also remain available on Starz platforms.”