How long is the average delay between theatrical and SVOD release?

A well-worn battle line in the film business is that of the Home Entertainment release window. Exhibitors are seeking to maintain a long period of exclusive access to new titles, while the Studios are constantly pushing for a free hand in the choosing of Home Entertainment release dates.

But what of the window between theatrical and SVOD release?

This article addresses this question, looking at the delay in titles reaching Netflix (in the US and internationally), how it’s shifting over time and how this delay connects with the fight over traditional windows of release.

How soon after theatrical release do movies reach Netflix?

In the US, there were 174 films which were released in cinemas during 2016 and ended up on Netflix. The average delay across those titles was 474 days – i.e. just over a year and three months. This is four times longer than the Home Entertainment window in the same year (110 days).

The US has the shortest SVOD window of all the major territories we studied. The chart below covers 258 feature films which were in cinemas during 2016 and then went on to appear on Netflix in the same country.

Some countries had a very similar SVOD window to the US, such as Canada (479 days) and Russia (487), while others had a much longer delay (924 in South Korea and a whopping 1,170 in France).


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What is VOD Clickstream?

Our unique clickstream data allows us to analyse viewing patterns on Netflix between January 2016 and June 2019.

This data has some powerful qualities and unusual limitations so be sure to check out the details here.

This is wholly independent research. We’re not affiliated with Netflix or any other streaming platform or studio.