Comcast Xfinity Customers Could See a Starz Blackout


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Starz is warning Comcast Xfinity customers that they might be losing access to the premium movie channel beginning on December 10.

In a message to customers, Starz said “in spite of our best efforts to engage in meaningful discussions, Comcast has publicly stated their intention to drop our networks from all packages and bundles,” going on to say that the Lionsgate-owned network is still working on coming to an agreement with Comcast.

Xfinity posted an update on their website, saying that as of December 10, Starz channels will be removed from all packages and 11 Starz and Encore channels will be dropped, with on-demand content from the channels remaining until December 31. Those channels include:

  • Starz Edge
  • Starz in Black
  • Starz Comedy
  • Starz Cinema
  • Starz Kids & Family
  • Encore Classic (A few areas will keep Encore Classic until December 31)
  • Encore Suspense
  • Encore Family
  • Encore Español
  • Indieplex
  • Retroplex

Xfinity mentions customer viewership and programming costs as two factors taken into consideration when making changes to their channel lineup, noting that replacing Starz with EPIX will help to manage programming costs.

Starz will still be available as a standalone add-on for $12 per month, according to the Xfinity website.

Here is the full statement from Starz:

“Starz has been working diligently to reach a fair market distribution agreement with Comcast Xfinity in order to continue providing our shared customers with access to our acclaimed line-up of premium television content. However, months before our contract deadline and in spite of our best efforts to engage in meaningful discussions, Comcast has publicly stated their intention to drop our networks from all packages and bundles, ignoring industry precedent and demonstrating a total disregard for its customers, communities, suppliers and other stakeholders.

“In response, we must now alert our millions of Comcast subscribers that they will soon lose all 17 STARZ channels, including STARZ and STARZ Encore along with our on-demand and online services without receiving any refund from Comcast for the loss of an irreplaceable premium programming lineup, including the sixth season of the hit series ‘Power,’ which delivered the #1 series premiere in premium cable for the summer in total viewers and continues to rank as the top-rated premium series among African American audiences, upcoming seasons of fan-favorite series like “Outlander,” “Vida” and “American Gods,” along with our deep catalogue of over 7,500 distinct premium television episodes and exclusive blockbuster films.

STARZ subscribers recognize the value of our programming, which elevates and captures diverse voices in storytelling that appeals to women, African American, Latinx and other under-served audiences. We are proud of the role we play in the lives of our fans, the communities we serve and the overall media landscape, and we remain committed to delivering our inclusive programming to customers around the world.

We continue to try to reach an agreement with Comcast that is fair, reasonable and ensures our shared customers’ continued access to a lineup of premium television content that speaks to them. In the meantime, however, we urge our customers to make it known to Comcast that there is no replacement for STARZ and demand that they continue to provide access to all of your favorite Starz shows or demand a refund.”

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