Swedish comedy “Lust” (HBO Max Original)
Warner Bros. Discovery has confirmed that it is halting development of local original productions for its streaming service HBO Max in the Nordics, Central Europe, the Netherlands and Turkey, though the company insists it is committed to these markets and will continue to make shows for its Discovery linear networks in those territories.
The move comes as part of a global strategic review following the WarnerMedia and Discovery merger, and subsequent moves to combine the new group flagship streaming services, HBO Max and discovery+, into a single platform, with the media giant seeking to make US$3 billion of savings within two years.
“As we continue to work on combining HBO Max and discovery+ into one global streaming service showcasing the breadth of content across Warner Bros. Discovery, we are reviewing our current content proposition on the existing services. As part of this process, we have decided to remove a limited amount of original programming from HBO Max, as well as ceasing our original programming efforts for HBO Max in the Nordics and Central Europe,” the company announced in a statement.
“We have also ceased our nascent development activities in the newer territories of Netherlands and Turkey, which had commenced over the past year. Our commitment to these markets has not changed. We will continue to commission local content for Warner Bros. Discovery’s linear networks in these regions and we remain substantial acquirers of local third-party content for use on our streaming services,” Warner Bros. Discovery added.
According to Variety, which first reported the news, while original development will be halted immediately in the aforementioned territories, programs that are already in production will continue, and it is understood a number of green lights that have not yet been announced will also move ahead. However, some of these shows may be sold to other platforms, a move that may provide Warner Bros. Discovery with more licensing opportunities elsewhere.