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The week in OTT: PlayStation Vue adds HBO, Cinemax; Netflix orders new animated comedy

The week inover-the-top provides a recap of recent news related to OTT initiatives fromvarious networks and platforms.

* SonyCorp. added TimeWarner Inc. channels HBO (US) and Cinemax to its over-the-top platformPlayStation Vue, according to a Sept. 29 blog post.The company also unveiled a new Ultra offering, which includes HBO, 's , and more than 100channels available in the Elite offering. A monthly subscription costs $64.99,or $74.99 in cities where PS Vue provides most major live local broadcaststations.

* NetflixInc. ordered a new animated comedy, "Pacific Heat,"from Australian company Working Dog Productions, Variety reportedSept. 29. The 13-episode series will debut on Netflix on Dec. 2 in Canada,Ireland, the U.K., and the U.S. The series will premiere in late 2016 inAustralia. 

In other platformnews…

* E.W. ScrippsCo.'s multiplatform satire brand, Cracked, an original content channel forRoku Inc.'s streamingplatform. Cracked will launch exclusive content for Roku, starting with athree-part, Halloween-focused series "Tales to Get Scared To," thecompany said Sept.29.

* Otter Media's Ellation unveiled eight new channel partners for video platformVRV. Premium channels of Funimation, Tested, RiffTrax, CollegeHumor, Machinima,GINX eSports TV and Shudder will be available on VRV when it launches later in2016, according to a Sept. 29 newsrelease. Further, animation-focused digital distributor MONDO will debutits exclusive MONDO Premium service on VRV. Otter Media is a joint venturebetween the Chernin Group and AT&T Inc.

* Microsoft Corp.'s Xbox One gaming console network's stand-alonesubscription streaming app to its lineup. The Starz app, which can bedownloaded for free via the Xbox Live service, will allow subscribers to watchfirst-run movies and exclusive Starz original series, including the upcomingseason two debuts of "Blunt Talk" and "Ash vs Evil Dead,"the company saidSept. 28. 

* Amazon.comInc.'s Amazon Studios placed orders for three new series for its Amazon PrimeVideo service, including one starring martial arts film star Jean-Claude VanDamme. The three new series — "I Love Dick," "Jean-Claude VanJohnson" and "The Tick" — will become Amazon original series andpremiere exclusively on Prime Video in 2017 in the U.S., the U.K., Germany,Austria and Japan, the company said Sept. 27.

* A+E Networks and AT&T inked a deal to A+E's channels onAT&T's upcoming streaming service DIRECTV Now. Under the deal, DIRECTV Nowat launch will offer A&E(US), LifetimeTelevision (US), History (US), LMN (US), FYI (US) and Viceland (US) to its subscribers. DIRECTV Now is set tolaunch in the fourth quarter of this year with more than 100 channels, whichwill include live and on-demand programming, as well as premium add-ons,according to a Sept. 26 newsrelease. A+E Networks is a joint venture of and

* struck a licensing with Dharma Productions as itcontinues preparations to launch its Prime Video service in India, Variety reportedSept. 26. The agreement includes the Indian studio's catalog of films as wellas upcoming releases.