The re-up between Showtime and DreamWorks came after that studio went through a courtship with Netflix, we’re told. This is a strategically important deal for Showtime, particularly as Netflix continues to add an inventory of original series and has a movie inventory that makes it an alternative to the pay channel. The question is whether DreamWorks generates enough to satisfy Showtime’s appetite for films. The studio doesn’t crank them out like they once did; there are two films so far scheduled for 2013 and two more for 2014. Showtime might have to add another supplier to fill that shortfall. It also has a deal with The Weinstein Company that is up in 2015 and that becomes more important because of TWC’s higher output.

LOS ANGELES, CA – March 14, 2013 – Showtime Networks Inc. and The Walt Disney Studios have extended their exclusive output agreement under which DreamWorks Studios’ films theatrically released by Disney through 2018 will air across SHOWTIME®, THE MOVIE CHANNEL™ and FLIX®, as well as its multiplex channels. Under the current agreement, which was set to run through 2015, Showtime Networks will continue to air high-profile DreamWorks features including The Help and War Horse across its premium channels. Lincoln will make its debut later this year. The announcement was made today by Gary Garfinkel, Senior Vice President, Content Acquisitions and Kent Sevener, Senior Vice President, Content Acquisitions and Business & Legal Affairs, Showtime Networks Inc., and Janice Marinelli, President, Disney-ABC Domestic Television.

“We are delighted to extend our output deal with The Walt Disney Studios as we continue to offer DreamWorks’ critically-acclaimed theatrical films to our subscribers,” said Garfinkel and Sevener. “Coupled with our award-winning series, specials, documentaries and sports offerings, as well as our current supply of theatrical titles, these wonderful films add incredible value to our robust programming slate.”

“Showtime has been a tremendous partner and we are thrilled to be expanding our highly-valued relationship with them for DreamWorks Studios’ first-rate slate of films,” said Janice Marinelli, President, Disney-ABC Domestic Television. “Showtime has successfully embraced the DreamWorks brand and this long-term extension guarantees that these top quality, diverse and entertaining films will continue to complement Showtime’s impressive programming line-up for years to come.”

“The partnership with Showtime has been a successful one and we look forward to continue working with them to bring our films to their audiences,” said Jeff Small, President and COO of DreamWorks Studios. “Our thanks to Janice Marinelli and her team at Disney for continuing to find the perfect home for our films.”