Lionsgate to stream four blockbusters for free on YouTube

Tom ButlerSenior Editor
Yahoo Movies UK
Jennifer Lawrence as Katniss Everdeen in the first <i>Hunger Games</i> film, released in 2012. (Lionsgate)
Jennifer Lawrence as Katniss Everdeen in the first Hunger Games film, released in 2012. (Lionsgate)

Lionsgate UK has announced plans to stream four of its biggest movies for free to raise money for charity during the coronavirus lockdown.

Beginning on Saturday, 2 May and continuing weekly as part of Lionsgate Live! A Night at the Movies the distributor will livestream the multiple award-winning La La Land, the uplifting biopic Eddie The Eagle, the British classic Bend It Like Beckham, and the smash-hit blockbuster The Hunger Games exclusively on the Lionsgate UK YouTube channel.

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With cinemas closed across the country by the coronavirus outbreak, Lionsgate UK says it wants to celebrate the communal experience of going to the cinema, while supporting the NHS Charities Together COVID-19 Urgent Appeal and The Film and TV Charity COVID-19 Emergency Response with the programming.

2 May – La La Land

9 May – Eddie The Eagle

16 May – Bend It Like Beckham

23 May – The Hunger Games

It’s not clear how the charities will benefit from the streams, but it’s likely to include call-to-actions for donations to the charities.

Each film shown as part of Lionsgate Live! A Night at the Movies will be presented by a celebrity host, including Edith Bowman, Keith Lemon, Jack Whitehall and Jonathan Ross.

Every Saturday the event will feature special programming and interactive opportunities for fans, such as surprise guest appearances, real-time fan chats via YouTube Live, live tweeting from @LionsgateUK and partners, costume contests, giveaways, and more.

“Although there is nothing quite like watching a film on the big screen, Lionsgate Live! is a great chance for the UK to come together and celebrate the cinematic experience from home,” said Zygi Kamasa, CEO Lionsgate UK.

Read more: Hunger Games movie prequel details

“This is a fantastic opportunity for us to show our support and raise money for the NHS Charities Together COVID-19 Urgent Appeal and The Film and TV Charity COVID-19 Emergency Response, who are both doing incredible work during this time. Join us as we celebrate a night out at the cinema, and bring it on home!”

To present the live movie event, Lionsgate UK is joining partners including Cineworld, Odeon, Showcase, Empire, The Light, Picturehouse, Everyman, Curzon, The Industry Trust and many other Independent Cinemas across the country.

Gourmet popcorn brand Joe & Seph’s has also created three exclusive Gourmet Popcorn Bundles, which movie fans can have delivered to their door ready for each Saturday night streaming session, and enjoy 10% off.

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