One of the most devasting stories for cinephiles in 2018 was the closure of FilmStruck. The streaming service had become a mainstay for many people looking for a film education. Crafting a service with the combined forces of Turner Classic Movies and the Criterion Collection felt like a huge win, even though it catered to a niche audience. However, when the doors shuddered last year, the internet erupted in protest. Ultimately, Warner Media did not change their decision, and the service ended. However, the Criterion Collection quickly announced they would return in 2019, and apparently, they have followed through.
In a press release, the Criterion Collection announced the debut day for their new network, The Criterion Network. The service has been pegged for a debut on April 8, 2019. Most importantly, the new Criterion Channel will be available on a lot of platforms from day 1. They specifically cite many of them in the release, including Roku, Amazon Fire, Apple TV, iOS, Android devices, and of course, computers.
One of the ways the Criterion Collection will look to draw early subscribers will be their Movie of the Week program. This service will give charter members access to a film every Wednesday until the program begins in April. The first film available to charter subscribers will be “Mikey and Nicky” from Elaine May. That feature just completed a remaster, supervised by May herself. Additionally, charter members will be locked into a cost of $8.99 for the duration of their membership, including an expanded one-month free trial. The price will only remain if the member does not let their subscription lapse. Otherwise, the price point will be $10.99 per month. With the news that the subscription will carry 1000 movies, some cinephiles will breathe a sigh of relief.