HBO’s The Last of Us is coming to Prime Video – but it’ll only be available to watch on Amazon’s streaming service in France.
Per The Hollywood Reporter and Deadline, Warner Bros. Discovery (WBD) – HBO’s parent company – has struck a landmark deal with Amazon to launch what it calls the ‘Warner Pass’. The new content deal will allow Prime Video to show every HBO TV series in France, and offer access to 12 WBD-owned channels, including Eurosport, Cartoon Network, and the Discovery Channel.
The announcement couldn’t come at a better time for Prime Video subscribers (in France, anyway). The Last of Us, HBO’s TV adaptation of Naughty Dog’s beloved video game series of the same name and one of 2023’s most highly anticipated shows, is being released on Sunday, January 15.
Thanks to this deal, France-based Prime Video fans can stream every episode of The Last of Us one day after they air on HBO Max in the US. Even better, The Last of Us will be free to watch for French Amazon Prime subscribers. But don’t worry, non-France citizens – you’ll be able to watch The Last of Us in your world region, and you can find out where below.
Additionally, French subscribers will have access to new instalments of the best HBO Max shows, including Succession season 4, Perry Mason season 2, and Barry season 4, which also arrive this year. New TV series in HBO’s 2023 slate, such as The Idol and True Detective: Night Country, will also be streamable when they’re released.
(Image credit: HBO)
“We are thrilled to agree a new partnership with Prime Video in France,” Pierre Branco, WBD General Manager France, Benelux & Africa, said in a press release. “The launch of the Warner Pass is great news for the French audience as our fans will be able to access all HBO series and our 12 television channels with a single subscription.”
The Warner Pass’ price point hasn’t been revealed yet, but it’ll be offered to Prime Video France customers in March. Currently, a monthly Prime Video subscription in France costs €5.99 per month. However, it’s unclear if French customers can add the Warner Pass to their current plan – much like the Prime Video Channels available in the US and UK – for an additional fee, or if they’ll need to buy a new, joint Prime Video-Warner Pass subscription to benefit from the deal.
Curiously, WBD’s deal with Prime Video won’t affect the former’s ambition to launch its joint HBO Max-Discovery super-streamer in France in the future. Warner Bros’ merger with Discovery, which was announced in April 2022, means the companies’ streaming service – HBO Max and Discovery Plus – are being combined into a single entity. An announcement on this new streaming platform, rumored to be called Max, is expected sometime this year, and it’ll likely make its way onto our best streaming service list at some stage.
Analysis: not-so-Prime candidates
(Image credit: HBO)
Viewers in other nations, such as the US and UK, might wonder why The Last of Us won’t be available to watch on Prime Video in their regions.
Simply put, it’s down to the global TV rights deals WBD has with content providers. In the UK, for example, Sky has been the home for HBO shows and movies since 2014. The pair even entered a co-production pact in 2019 to make shows together, such as the award-winning Chernobyl and comedy series Landscapers. Sky’s deal with HBO is due to expire in 2024, but the duo are expected to renew their partnership before it runs out, effectively ruling out the launch of HBO Max on British shores.
HBO Max is available in numerous countries and world territories, too. The streamer’s roll out in Latin America, South America, and parts of Europe means the best HBO Max movies and TV shows are available to watch directly from WBD’s main platform. World regions, such as Australia (Foxtel), sub-Saharan Africa (Showmax), and Canada (Crave) have similar distribution deals to Sky’s in the UK, ensuring that HBO content is readily available to audiences in these countries on different platforms.
The Last of Us, then, won’t be streamable on Prime Video in these countries. However, global audiences will be able to watch it on a channel wherever they live, removing the need for WBD to make The Last of Us, or any of its HBO shows, available on Prime Video outside of France. In short: don’t worry, you can watch The Last of Us throughout the world when it launches on January 15/16.
Before it’s released, though, check out our review of The Last of Us TV show. Alternatively, find out how its creators adapted the hit game series’ story for the small screen, or read up on the best Prime Video shows.