It’s the first studio to offer concessions in the EU investigation into agreements with the Hollywood majors and Sky. Disney, NBC Universal, Sony, Twentieth Century Fox, Warner Bros and Sky are also under investigation.
The European Commission is investigating agreements between six major film studios, including Paramount Pictures, and Sky UK. Clauses in the agreement prevent Sky from offering its services outside the UK and Ireland – and other their pay-TV companies distributing their content into the two markets.
Last July, the Commission said the clauses grant ‘absolute territorial exclusivity’ to Sky UK and/or other broadcasters, and that they eliminate cross-border competition between pay-TV broadcasters and partition the Single Market across national borders.
According to the Commission, Paramount Pictures has offered the following commitments, which would apply throughout the European Economic Area (EEA):
- When licensing its film output for pay-TV to a broadcaster in the EEA, Paramount Pictures would not (re)introduce contractual obligations, which preventor limit a pay-TV broadcaster from responding to unsolicited requests from consumers within the EEA but outside of the pay-TV broadcaster’s licensed territory (No “Broadcaster Obligation”);
- When licensing its film output for pay-TV to a broadcaster in the EEA, Paramount Pictures would not re(introduce) contractual obligations, which require Paramount to prohibit or limit pay-TV broadcasters located outside the licensed territory from responding to unsolicited requests from consumers within the licensed territory (No “Paramount Obligation”);
- Paramount Pictures would not seek to bring an action before a court or tribunal for the violation of a Broadcaster Obligation in an existing agreement licensing its film output for pay-TV;
- Paramount Pictures would not act upon or enforce a Paramount Obligation in an existing agreement licensing its film output for pay-TV.
The commitments would apply for a period of five years on pay-TV services including linear channels and on demand services carried both over satellite and DTT.