Flixster has shut down its UltraViolet video redemption and collection streaming service, Flixster Video. Originally owned by Warner Brothers, Flixster was one of the original UltraViolet digital video content providers. Warner Brothers is one of the founding members of the Digital Entertainment Content Ecosystem and was a driving force behind the UltraViolet digital copy format, which positioned itself as a competitor to Apple’s iTunes-based digital copy redemption service.
The web of ownership and transfers is a bit complicated here, but Warner brothers sold Flixster to Fandango in early 2016. Fandango quickly spun out the UltraViolet redemption and viewing service into Flixster Video, separating it from Flixster’s movie discovery and recommendation service. Around the same time, Fandango also acquired UltraViolet partner M-GO, rebranding it as FandangoNow, leaving Fandango with two UltraViolet properties. Warner Brothers retained some equity ownership in Flixster, while Fandango is owned by NBCUniversal.
As of August 28, 2017, the Flixster Video site and apps now display a service notice and FAQs that, curiously, blame the shut-down on “circumstances beyond our control related to the unexpected shutdown of a critical vendor.” Realistically, this consolidation was inevitable. What’s curious, however, is that while the FAQs mentions FandangoNow as an alternative, they’re clearly promoting and directing customers to VUDU to continue accessing their Ultraviolet library content. Coincidentally, we’d argue that VUDU probably offers the best UltraViolet service among all the participating vendors.
Were you a Flixster Video customer, and if so, are you sorry to see it go? Share your thoughts and future UltraViolet plans in the comments.