Weeks after losing The Office, Netflix is now bracing itself for the impending departure of Friends. Beginning in 2020, Ross, Rachel, Joey, Chandler, Monica, and Phoebe will be moving to WarnerMedia’s new streaming platform, HBO Max.
The just-announced direct-to-consumer streaming service will offer 10,000 hours of content upon its launch in spring 2020. HBO Max will combine content from HBO with programming from Warner Bros., New Line, DC Entertainment, CNN, TNT, TBS, truTV, The CW, Turner Classic Movies, Cartoon Network, Adult Swim, and Looney Tunes, according to Variety.
Beyond Friends, HBO Max will be the exclusive streaming home to The Fresh Prince of Bel Air, Pretty Little Liars, and DC Entertainment’s forthcoming Batwoman series, amongst other titles.
“HBO Max will bring together the diverse riches of WarnerMedia to create programming and user experiences not seen before in a streaming platform. HBO’s world-class programming leads the way, the quality of which will be the guiding principle for our new array of Max Originals, our exciting acquisitions, and the very best of the Warner Bros. libraries, starting with the phenomenon that is Friends,” said Robert Greenblatt, chairman, WarnerMedia Entertainment and Direct-To-Consumer, in a statement.
HBO Max will launch initially as a paid subscription service, but WarnerMedia is also planning to offer an ad-supported tier at some point.
Of course, the news is yet another major blow to Netflix, which was already reeling from the loss of The Office. As of last year, The Office and Friends ranked as the platform’s two most viewed series.