Amazon Studios announces plans to expand movie production, will acquire films to stream

Markets Associated Press

Amazon says it will significantly expand into movie production by acquiring movies for theatrical release and early online streaming.

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Amazon Studios announced Monday that has created a new hub for movies, Amazon Original Movies. It will produced and acquire original films for both traditional release in theaters and early-window distribution via its subscription Amazon Prime Instant Video service.

The announcement marks a new foray into the movie business for the online retail giant, which has in recent years developed a slate of TV series. Most recently, its acclaimed "Transparent" won two Golden Globe awards.

The move comes on the heels of Sony Pictures' unprecedented digital distribution of the Seth Rogen comedy "The Interview." Netflix has also pushed into movies, inking deals with Adam Sandler and the Weinstein Co.