Lionsgate-owned streaming service Starzplay has been officially rebranded to Lionsgate Plus (stylized as Lionsgate+) in 35 global territories.
The platform will keep its existing Starz title in the US and Canada – and remain as Starzplay Arabia and Lionsgate Play in Arabic countries and Southeast Asia, respectively – though these versions will likewise benefit from new design elements and an updated graphics package.
Despite rumors suggesting that Lionsgate is looking to sell off stakes in Starz, the company says the move to rebrand Starzplay internationally comes in a bid to help differentiate the service in a crowded streaming market.
Welcome to LIONSGATE+ 😏 #LionsgatePlus pic.twitter.com/M1CL39hkSuSeptember 28, 2022
“Operating under Lionsgate Plus internationally brings a distinct and differentiated identity in an increasingly crowded international marketplace, and builds on the brand equity in the Lionsgate name that our extensive research has proven is strong around the world,” Jeffrey Hirsch, president and CEO of Starz, said in a statement.
“Even with the separation of Starz and the Lionsgate studio business, the Lionsgate brand will continue to be valuable to the ongoing success of our international platform.”
Evidently, Lionsgate believes its mission to bring “a distinct and differentiated identity” to its streaming service is better served by the Lionsgate Plus name, as opposed to Starzplay, although some consumers have expressed confusion towards the move:
Me: "Starzplay". What an awful name for a streaming service, "Starzplay". They genuinely couldn't come up with a worse name than that.Starzplay: pic.twitter.com/YcZ99q0zbXSeptember 28, 2022
Granted, Starzplay wasn’t a great name to begin with – but while Lionsgate Plus is certainly a more uniform title (by virtue of its competition), it’s not exactly "distinct and differentiated" in 2022.
The rebrand also risks leaving those not in-the-know thinking that Lionsgate Plus is an entirely separate entity to Starz – despite the two platforms sharing the same content slate (which includes shows like Outlander, Power and Gaslit).
Lionsgate isn’t the only studio to fall into the ‘Plus’ honeytrap, mind. Epix, the MGM-owned premium cable network, was recently rebranded to MGM Plus (stylized as MGM+) following Amazon’s high-profile acquisition of the James Bond production company in 2021.
For more of the latest streaming-related news, check out our report on Netflix’s bold new plan to make you engage with its video games, and our deep-dive into the production troubles affecting Marvel’s upcoming Blade movie.
Get daily insight, inspiration and deals in your inbox
Get the hottest deals available in your inbox plus news, reviews, opinion, analysis and more from the TechRadar team.
Axel is a London-based Senior Staff Writer at TechRadar, reporting on everything from the latest Apple developments to newest movies as part of the site's daily news output. Having previously written for publications including Esquire and FourFourTwo, Axel is well-versed in the applications of technology beyond the desktop, and his coverage extends from general reporting and analysis to in-depth interviews and opinion.
Axel studied for a degree in English Literature at the University of Warwick before joining TechRadar in 2020, where he then earned an NCTJ qualification as part of the company’s inaugural digital training scheme.