John Drinnan

Media writer for the New Zealand Herald

Telecom unveils Lightbox line-up

Alyssa Sutherland, Travis Fimmel and Kathryn Winnick star in Lightbox's headline series The Vikings.
Alyssa Sutherland, Travis Fimmel and Kathryn Winnick star in Lightbox's headline series The Vikings.

Telecom - soon to become Spark - has revealed more shows that will be available on its new Lightbox subscription video on demand service launching toward the end of August.

Also announced today was the appointment of experienced digital media leader Kym Niblock as the Managing Director of Lightbox.

Titles include several shows that have already played on Sky TV and the free to air channels including Masters of Sex, Orange is the New Black, Breaking Bad, House of Cards, Homeland,The Blacklist, Sons of Anarchy, Alpha House, Modern Family, Betas, Louie, Downton Abbey, and Arrested Development.


Titles announced include Mad Men starring Jon Hamm, left, and Lightbox first-run exclusive Arrested Development starring Portia de Rossi.

It also includes shows on Netflix, the big US video on demand service tipped to launch here next year - Orange is the New Black, and the political drama House of Cards, which has already played on TV3.

First-run exclusive shows include Outlander, Alpha House, Betas and Arrested Development, alongside previously announced titles 24: Live Another Day, Vikings and Mad Men.

The company is focused on TV series initially but will later include movies.


Lightbox has secured Outlander, a new fantasy drama starring Caitriona Balfe, left, and 24: Live Another Day starring Kiefer Sutherland.

Lightbox confirmed that deals have been signed with local producers.

Sci-fi fans will be pleased with the inclusion of Orphan Black and Doctor Who, and children will enjoy essential kids' viewing such as Dora the Explorer and The Wiggles, as well as new animated parent-charmer Sarah & Duck.

The service can be used across multiple devices, including laptop, desktop, iPad and Airplay on Apple TV. Up to five devices can be registered to each Lightbox account and two shows can be played at once so you can watch the latest drama series in the living room while your kids sing along to their cartoon favourites in their bedroom.

A parental control function enables parents to filter out content playback according to rating.

Internet service provider Slingshot is providing a service where New Zealanders can subscribe through a back door route, though Telecom and other SVOD services including Sky and Telecom are pressing Hollywood studios to clamp down on the arrangement, which undermines the value of the what they pay for New Zealand rights.

Sky TV is planning a similar video on demand service to launch around the same time and the launch of the service will mark the first time there will be direct face to face competition between local pay TV services.

Exclusive Lightbox first-run titles announced so far include:


• Outlander
• Alpha House
• Betas
• Arrested Development
• 24: Live Another Day
• Vikings
• Mad Men

See Lightbox's content announcement here:

- NZ Herald

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