Two weeks after the streaming service FilmStruck was discontinued by Warner Bros, arthouse label The Criterion Collection announced the formation of a new independent streaming service on Friday. The Criterion Channel will stream arthouse hits, cult classics and world cinema favourites from mid-2019.
“The Criterion Channel will be picking up where the old service left off, programming director spotlights and actor retrospectives featuring major Hollywood and international classics and hard-to-find discoveries from around the world, complete with special features like commentaries, behind-the-scenes footage, and original documentaries,” an official statement from the company read.
The film library of The Criterion Channel will also be available for streaming on WarnerMedia’s upcoming direct-to-consumer streaming platform, which will be launched in 2019.
FilmStruck was started in 2016, and was discontinued due to diminishing subscribers. This led to an outcry among cinephiles and members from the film industry and a Change.org petition. Filmmakers and actors, including Guillermo del Toro, Stephen Spielberg, Leonardo DiCaprio, Barbra Streisand, Christopher Nolan and Alfonso Cuaron, also wrote an open letter to Warner Bros chief Toby Emmerich, asking them to reconsider their decision.