Netflix is quickly changing the landscape of the studio system.
The streaming site announced Thursday that it has closed a deal with Adam Sandler and his production company, Happy Madison. Four new movies starring Sandler will premiere exclusively in 50 Netflix territories. Notably, there will be no studio middleman facilitating the deal, and the films will bypass a theatrical run.
“When these fine people came to me with an offer to make four movies for them, I immediately said yes for one reason and one reason only . Netflix rhymes with Wet Chicks,” said Sandler, in a statement. “Let the streaming begin!””
According to Netflix, this deal capitalizes on Sandler’s comedic brand and box office draw; Sandler is also one of the top-ranked actors in terms of most viewed movies globally across the Netflix platform. This arrangement comes at a time when films are increasingly moving toward the video-on-demand circuit, as Netflix also announced last week that it will partner with the Weinstein Company to release Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon: The Green Legend simultaneously with select IMAX theaters in Aug. 2015.
“People love Adam’s films on Netflix and often watch them again and again. His appeal spans across viewers of all ages – everybody has a favorite movie, everyone has a favorite line – not just in the US but all over the world,” Netflix Chief Content Officer Ted Sarandos said in a statement.