Hulu strikes deal with FX to stream 'The Strain,' other series

Hulu now has exclusive VOD rights to new and upcoming FX and FXX shows, such as "The Strain," "Baskets"

The undead vampires on FX’s “The Strain” -- and some other eccentric characters from across the FX networks -- will have an afterlife on Hulu.

The streaming service has secured a deal with Twentieth Century Fox Television Distribution for exclusive subscription video-on-demand rights to new and upcoming FX and FXX series that are produced or co-produced by FX Productions.

Under the multiyear pact, the first seasons of shows such as “Tyrant,” “The Strain,” Married,” and “You’re the Worst” -- all of which debuted in 2014 -- will be available exclusively on Hulu Plus (its $7.99-per-month service) ahead of their second-season premieres. Hulu will then gain subscription streaming rights to subsequent seasons of said shows.

Current-season FX Networks series will remain available via the FXNow app.

The forthcoming FX titles that Hulu will also add to its library are FXX comedy series “Man Seeking Woman,” starring Jay Baruchel, which rolls out in January; “The Comedians,” starring Billy Crystal and Josh Gad, which premieres in the spring; “Baskets,” starring Zach Galifianakis, which is eyeing a 2016 rollout; “Sex&Drugs&Rock&Roll,” starring Denis Leary and John Corbett; and period drama “Taboo,” starring Tom Hardy.

A cross-promotion arrangement will be in play to boost the synergy between Hulu and FX Networks. That means FX Networks will significantly promote Hulu across its channels, while Hulu will provide FX Networks with on- and off-site branding.

In a statement, Craig Erwich, Hulu’s head of content, touted the diversity that the FX shows will add to the streaming site’s library.

“We are thrilled to begin this partnership, which will add a wide variety of popular series, and fresh, yet-to-air series to our ever expanding roster of great content,” he said.

Hulu has also licensed -- nonexclusively -- prior seasons of “American Horror Story” and the recently departed “Sons of Anarchy,” as well as comedies “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia,” “Louie,” “Archer,” “The League” and “Wilfred.”

Eric Schrier, president of original programming for FX Networks and FX Productions, described the pact in a statement as an “integral component to our future,” adding that it would allow FX Networks and FX Productions to “continue to expand [their] original program offerings.”

The deal makes Hulu, which is a joint venture of Disney, 21st Century Fox and Comcast’s NBCUniversal, the SVOD home to the largest selection of FX Networks content. Outside of the FX friendship-building, Hulu will also gain exclusive subscription streaming rights to Fox’s upcoming M. Night Shyamalan event series “Wayward Pines.”

Twitter: @villarrealy

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