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Netflix lures Ryan Murphy in deal said to be worth as much as US$300m

Streaming giant Netflix has won yet another battle against old Hollywood.

[NEW YORK] Streaming giant Netflix has won yet another battle against old Hollywood.

On Tuesday night, Netflix announced that it had poached hit-making producer Ryan Murphy from 21st Century Fox.

The five-year deal is worth as much as US$300 million, according to two people with knowledge of the agreement, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss private negotiations. That would be one of the biggest deals ever made for a television producer.

While the agreement will come as a disappointment to the studio where Murphy has spent most of his career, it also delivers a serious blow to the Walt Disney Co, which reached a deal in December to acquire most of 21st Century Fox for US$52.4 billion.

Murphy's contract with Fox expires in the summer, and he will make the move to Netflix in July.

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The producer behind "Glee", "Nip/Tuck" and the anthology series "American Crime Story" and "American Horror Story", Murphy would have been a key piece in the expanded Disney empire, and Fox executives made several attempts to keep him in the corporate family. Amazon also courted him seriously, which played a role in driving up the price for the 52-year-old writer, director and producer from Indianapolis.

"This history of this moment is not lost on me," Murphy said in a statement.

"I am a gay kid from Indiana who moved to Hollywood in 1989 with US$55 in savings in my pocket, so the fact that my dreams have crystallised and come true in such a major way is emotional and overwhelming to me."

Paving the way for Murphy to make the jump to streaming was the US$100 million deal Netflix reached in August with producer Shonda Rhimes, the creator of the ABC series "Grey's Anatomy" and "Scandal".

Murphy's vast slate at Fox will not disappear overnight. All future seasons of "American Crime Story", "American Horror Story" and "Feud" will continue to air on FX. His procedural drama, "9-1-1", which is only six weeks old and is becoming something of a sleeper hit, will continue on Fox.

And his new drama about the 1980s New York vogue scene, "Pose", with a largely transgender cast, will proceed at FX.


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