Criterion and Hulu FAQ

February 15, 2011 at 12:59pm

We've been hearing a lot of feedback and excitement about our Hulu launch and we're happy to answer as many questions as we can. To start, here are a couple of the big ones…



First, our relationship with Netflix:


We love Netflix, and they are still one of Criterion's most important partners, but Hulu demonstrated a real commitment to the Criterion brand that persuaded us they would be the better home base for our streaming efforts. It has never been easy to find Criterion movies on Netflix — "Criterion" is not even a searchable term there. Compare that with Hulu's willingness to develop a whole area of their site around us, brand the films associated with us, and develop the capability to show many of our supplements alongside our films. The energetic, independent, creative team at Hulu was willing to build their business around us in a way that just wasn't in the cards anywhere else. 


Second, physical vs. digital:


The real Criterion experience has always been a carefully designed and packaged edition of a film looking its best. That's what we've been known for more than 25 years. Today, the state of the art is our Blu-ray line, and if you want the full Criterion experience, that's what you should be watching. We think Hulu just adds to that. It gives viewers a chance to explore our library, sample films they might want to buy, discover films they never knew they would want, and see films so rare that they would never see the light of day in disc editions.


In today's world, it's not just a matter of either/or, it's both/and. Some people prefer physical books, some are e-reader converts. Others like to have the hardback book on the bedside table and the Kindle edition in our backpacks. We want to serve anyone who is interested in seeing these films, wherever they are, and however they prefer to watch.


Let us know here if you have further questions and we'll do our best to address them.