YouTube’s selection of movies has been largely awful to date, both in terms of size and quality. That may soon change in a big way, though, as a new report puts Google in discussions to buy the digital rights to over 700 Miramax films.
Claire Atkinson wrote, "Google is in talks with Filmyard Holdings, the soon-to-be owners of famed film studio Miramax, about a potential deal to gain digital rights to Miramax’s archives, according to people close to the situation."
Atkinson then continued, "Sources said Google is eyeing the film rights to bolster its efforts to turn YouTube into a Web destination for longer form content, although Google may have to do battle with Netflix, which has also shown an interest in Miramax’s film library."
Whoever wins will get an impressive prize. Miramax is an important name in the entertainment industry, with ties to movies like City of Men, Garden State, Heavenly Creatures, and Pulp Fiction. Movies that people want to watch over and over, in other words, versus abominations like Bachelor Party in the Bungalow of the Damned – something YouTube currently offers – that shouldn’t be viewed even once.
We’ll see what happens. Unfortunately, it’s hard to say when any deal could be sealed, as the acquisition of Miramax by Filmyard Holdings is still itself underway at this point.