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Re: BFI Player Classics streaming service launches in a week
I think Criterion and TCM/HBO Max have struck some kind of deal and Criterion is getting some kickback as part of whatever they "curate" and pass along. The question is how long-term the licensing deals are for the films--it's possible that Criterion has some long-term deals and they are making a bit of dough "loaning out" or "sub-letting" them under the terms of their arrangement. We'll see how long some of those films stay up at HBO Max--these films seem to have a pretty short shelf life there, at least from what I've seen so far.
I recall that Eddie M. was very unhappy about Disney's purchase of Fox's library, and was questioning of Twitter whether we'd ever see those films again. When they get back to the "Ask Eddie" thingee (should be in the next week or two) you might submit a question about Disney & Fox and find out his current thinking/info on the matter...