France Telecom, Canal Plus Renegotiate Cinema TV Deal

France Telecom SA, France’s biggest phone company, and Vivendi SA’s Canal Plus unit are in talks to renegotiate a movie service deal.

The two companies in January said they were planning to form a strategic partnership by merging France Telecom’s Orange Cinema Series television channels with Canal Plus in a 50-50 venture. France Telecom Chief Executive Officer Stephane Richard said in Paris today that a new deal may involve Canal Plus taking a minority stake in the venture.

The companies aimed to create a new premium channel, Orange Cine Star, offering exclusive films and TV series. Richard, who took over the largest French phone company in March 2011, has deemphasized the in-house content operations created by his predecessor, Didier Lombard, in favor of co-operation with outside editorial teams.

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