Lionsgate+ Twist: Stays on Prime Video Despite Shutdown

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In a surprising twist, Lionsgate+ isn’t going away completely for UK viewers, despite its earlier announcement that the streaming service will shut down this month.

Even though its own app and service will indeed stop on February 29, 2024 (as we previously reported) Lionsgate+ will still be around on Amazon’s Prime Video Channels in the UK for a while longer.

This news is a bit of a surprise for fans who thought they’d have to say goodbye to their favourite shows soon, with Outlander fans being particularly vocal on social media. 

Here’s everything subscribers need to know about watching Lionsgate+ via Prime Video, and how to get a refund if you’re already subscribed via other means.

Lionsgate+, The Road So Far

Launched in October 2022, following the rebranding of StarzPlay, Lionsgate+ aimed to carve out a niche in the competitive streaming market with a mix of acclaimed shows from Starz, alongside other notable international offerings.

The First Incarnation – StarzPlay

Despite its efforts, Lionsgate+ struggled to secure a foothold against streaming giants, leading to the decision to cease operations of its standalone platform.

Lionsgate+’s journey in the UK, albeit brief, has been marked by a commitment to delivering a diverse range of content, from the historical drama Outlander to the critically acclaimed The Great.

Originally available as both a standalone service and through Amazon’s Prime Video Channels, it offered viewers flexibility in how they accessed its content.

Lionsgate Plus on TV mockup

The standalone Lionsgate+ app, which still works but is no longer open for new subscriptions, was available for Android and iOS devices, with a monthly subscription price of £5.99.

Expanding its reach in October 2022, Lionsgate+ also launched as an app on Sky Glass, Sky Stream, and Sky Q, marking a new European partnership that aimed to bring more TV and film content across Sky platforms.

Why Is Lionsgate+ Shutting Down?

As we reported back in November, Lionsgate+ is set to shut down its UK operations at the end of this month.

This shift marks a significant reorganisation as Starz aims to become independent from its current owner, Lionsgate. The acquisition of Starz by Lionsgate in 2016 was a notable event in the entertainment sector, which has since undergone swift digital evolution.

In response to these changes, Lionsgate has been reassessing its approach to concentrate on more lucrative and enduring segments of its portfolio.

This reassessment has prompted a restructuring effort that affects several of its ventures, including the Lionsgate+ streaming service in the UK.

Lionsgate Plus screenshot

Despite featuring acclaimed series such as Godfather of Harlem and Station Eleven, Lionsgate+ found it difficult to secure a foothold against leading platforms like Netflix and Disney+ in the competitive UK streaming landscape.

When Lionsgate first announced its upcoming closure, the fate of its Prime Video channel remained uncertain. Well – it’s still uncertain – but there’s a bit of good news for fans of the channel’s shows.

Lionsgate+ Staying On Prime Video UK… For Now

In its official announcement this week, Lionsgate re-confirmed its upcoming February 29 shutdown date but also included a surprise for fans – with the Amazon Prime Video version of the channel set to “continue for a bit longer”.

Amazon Prime Video Channels serve as a unique feature within the Amazon Prime Video ecosystem, offering subscribers the ability to customise their streaming experience with additional subscriptions to a wide range of television channels and streaming services.

This platform acts as a hub, allowing users to pick and choose from various content providers without the need to juggle multiple subscriptions or navigate different apps, and the billing all comes through Amazon.

Subscribers to Amazon Prime can access these channels for an additional fee (on top of your Prime subscription), with each channel offering its own unique selection of movies, TV shows, and exclusive content.

Prime Video Channels offer 2023
Prime Video Channels

Those channels are then available to watch on any device that includes the Amazon Prime Video app – which means almost every streaming device and Smart TV sold in the UK.

However, when you subscribe to a channel – Paramount+, for example – through Amazon Prime Video, you can only watch it on the Prime Video app.

You won’t be able to use the Paramount+ app or website with that subscription. It works the other way around, too: a subscription directly with Paramount+ doesn’t let you watch on Prime Video.

This rule applies to Lionsgate+ as well. If you’re currently subscribed to Lionsgate+ directly, you can’t switch your subscription over to watch on Prime Video. If you want to watch Lionsgate+ on Prime Video, you’ll need to sign up for it again through Amazon.

The price is the same – £5.99/month.

The Uncertain Horizon on Prime Video Channels

The decision to keep Lionsgate+ on Amazon’s Prime Video Channels “for a bit longer” provides a temporary lifeline for its subscribers.

However, the lack of a specific timeframe raises questions about the future availability of its content.

In pursuit of clarity, we reached out to Amazon for further details, but the company declined to specify an end date for Lionsgate+’s tenure on the platform – for now.

This ambiguity leaves subscribers in a state of limbo, wondering how long they will continue to have access to their favourite shows through this channel.

The most vocal fans – the Outlander crowd – have taken to social media to voice their anger but have so far been met with vague answers about the future of the show in the UK.

Outlander Season 6 gallery
Outlander (Photo: StarzPlay)

While it’s possible other streaming services will buy the show (and its prequel series), UK fans are sometimes left out, as is currently the case with The Walking Dead franchise, for example, which has released four spin-offs that have yet to be broadcast in the UK.

Will I Get A Refund When Lionsgate+ Is Cancelled?

To ensure a smooth transition, Lionsgate has assured subscribers that they will receive a prorated refund of their current subscription fee, credited to their original payment method.

This refund process may take up to 14 days. Until the service’s final day, subscribers will maintain full access, allowing them to enjoy all available shows (but, as mentioned, new subscribers can no longer sign up for the standalone service).

Lionsgate+ has made it clear that subscribers do not need to take any action regarding the cancellation of their subscriptions, as it will happen automatically.

What About Lionsagte+ Subscribers On Sky?

Sky has taken proactive steps to ensure a smooth transition for its customers by automatically cancelling Lionsgate+ subscriptions.

Lionsgate on Sky

This means subscribers won’t face any billing from this service beyond the closure date.

For those who have active accounts, Lionsgate+ reached out on January 9 to provide details about the termination of subscriptions.

However, individuals who subscribed to Lionsgate+ through Sky but did not activate their account will receive communication directly from Sky regarding the next steps.

In the meantime, subscribers can continue to use the Lionsgate+ app on Sky Q, Glass, and Stream until the service officially ends.

Alternatively, customers have the option to cancel their subscription at any point if they choose not to wait until the end of February. 

For now, you can still subscribe to Lionsgate+ on Amazon Prime Video Channels – and it will remain available there until its ultimate, definitive, and truly final farewell in the UK.

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