Epix Is Turning Into A Brand-New Streaming Service

Starting in 2023, the Epix streaming service will be rebranded as MGM+.

By Joshua Jones | Published

There is about to be another major shift towards streaming. According to THR, much like other services adding a plus symbol to a name like Paramount+ and Apple TV+, Epix will be rebranded as MGM+. The change will become effective in January 2023.

The Epix MGM+ rebranding comes as the parent company MGM acquired full ownership of the premium cable network from previous owners Viacom and Lionsgate in 2017. The deal included Paramount and Lionsgate receiving multiyear agreements to continue adding first-run movies onto Epix. When discussing the rebranding, Head of MGM+ Michael Wright expressed his optimism, saying, “MGM+ is the place to find television that reflects and celebrates the legacy of the iconic MGM brand.”

The report notes that the Epix MGM+ rebranding will kick off on January 15th. It’s purposely timed with the third season of the drama series Godfather of Harlem. Season two features Star Wars actor Forrest Whitaker. The show is considered one of Epix’s best-performing shows.

Nigel Thatch, Forest Whitaker, and Giancarlo Esposito in the Epix series Godfather of Harlem

The Epix MGM+ rebranding also comes as many major media conglomerates rely heavily on streaming and are squeezing their cable networks. On September 13th, it was reported that Paramount was considering shutting down Showtime as a standalone service and merging it with the company’s premium streaming service, Paramount+. According to company insiders, there would be no imminent changes to the Showtime brand, but the plan is part of long-term discussions with distributors.

THR notes that MGM+ will continue to feature films from MGM’s expansive library. Films such as No Time To Die, House of Gucci, and Licorice Pizza are just some that would be retained in the Epix rebranding into MGM+. The report also notes that the rest of the cable network’s portfolio is expected to focus much on MGM.

The change from Epix to now MGM+ is another effect of what’s been labeled as the streaming wars. Major media conglomerates are battling for content and subscribers while adapting to viewing habits. Following the pandemic, many people have decided to wait for films to end up on streaming rather than watch them in theaters.

The effects of the pandemic and the change in viewing habits have led to some troubling news for many theater chains. On September 7th, it was reported that one of the second-biggest theater chains, Cineworld Group, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. The decision to rebrand Epix into MGM+ may be MGM’s way of capitalizing on the increased interest in streaming content and their attempt to compete against Paramount+, HBO Max, Disney+, and other streaming services.

However, news of the Epix MGM+ rebranding is somewhat strange, considering that there have been reports of several significant talents getting cut out of millions of dollars from their content being shown on Epix. On September 20th, a report from Fortune suggested that A-list stars such as Tom Cruise and others were concerned over the rate of profits being paid out to them from Epix. Many celebrities who negotiated profit sharing as part of their contracts expressed concern that much of their post-theatrical revenue promised to them wasn’t getting paid out correctly. The post-theatrical revenue comes from third parties wishing to show the movies on cable channels such as Epix.

It’ll be interesting to see whether this would affect the Epix MGM+ rebranding. As of now, we’ll have to wait for the rebranding to occur early next year.