YouTube Forges Deal With Paramount to Offer Movie Rentals

Google Inc. (GOOG)’s YouTube announced a deal to offer online movie rentals from Viacom Inc. (VIAB)’s Paramount Pictures, adding a fifth major studio partner to the video- sharing site’s lineup.

Paramount will begin providing almost 500 titles to YouTube and Google Play, which delivers content to Android devices, YouTube said today in a blog post. The new movies, which include “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off,” “Transformers” and “The Godfather” trilogy, will be available in the next few weeks in the U.S. and Canada, typically priced at $2.99 to $3.99 for a 48-hour rental.

The move may represent a thawing of relations between YouTube and Viacom, which sued the site in 2007 for copyright infringement. Since then, YouTube has expanded beyond free upload-it-yourself videos into rentals of professional content. Google is counting on richer programming to compete with Apple Inc. (AAPL), Amazon.com Inc. and Netflix Inc. (NFLX), three of the top providers of digital entertainment.

“It’s still early days for us,” Malik Ducard, director of content partnerships at YouTube, said in the post. “We’ll continue adding new titles and expanding our service to more countries this year.”

Google’s stock fell 1.2 percent to $635.15 at the close in New York. Shares of the Mountain View, California-based company have declined 1.7 percent this year.

To contact the reporter on this story: Brian Womack in San Francisco at bwomack1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Tom Giles at tgiles5@bloomberg.net

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