Fans of vampires and werewolves who also happen to be Netflix subscribers have reason to celebrate. The streaming service has revealed that the original Underworld trilogy will be arriving on May 1 for subscribers. This doesn't include the entirety of the franchise, but it does include three horror/fantasy adventures with Kate Beckinsale's Selene to help pass the time while we all are stuck at home.
Netflix recently revealed many of the titles that will be arriving in May. Amongst those announcements were the first three Underworld movies, including the 2003 original, 2006's Underworld: Evolution and 2009's prequel Underworld: Rise of the Lycans. Notably absent from the lineup are 2012's Underworld: Awakening, as well as 2017's Underworld: Blood Wars. There is no explanation currently as to why Netflix isn't bringing the entire saga to subscribers next month, but it undoubtedly has something to do with money and/or rights issues.
While Netflix has focused primarily on original content in recent years, subscribers still enjoy licensed content on the service a great deal. Cult classics and old favorites regularly dominate the service's daily top ten lists, right alongside its original programming. So grabbing the rights to popular movies like this is still an essential part of their business model.
2003's Underworld centers on a secret clan of sophisticated Vampires who are mortal enemies with the Lycans, a cunning gang of street thugs who prowl the city's underbelly. Their bitter feud's origin is largely a mystery but balance of power between them escalates when a young Vampire warrior and a newly-turned Lycan with a mysterious past fall in love. While not a critical favorite by any stretch, the movie proved to be a big financial success, earning $95 million at the global box office against a $22 million budget. That paved the way for the four sequels that followed.
Len Wiseman directed the first two entries in the series. All of the movies featured Kate Beckinsale, though her role was minimal in Underworld 3: The Rise of The Lycans, given that it was a prequel. To date, the franchise has grossed just shy of $540 million worldwide. Beckinsale has remained adamant that she won't return as Selene, but the series looks to continue elsewhere. Last we heard, a TV show is in the works, with Wiseman at the helm, but no updates have been provided on that front in some time. Though, it was reportedly looking to set up shop at a streaming service such as Netflix.
For the time being, Netflix is enjoying huge success as people all around the world are turning to the service while following stay-at-home orders. The company recently reported it added nearly 16 million new subscribers in the first quarter of 2020. Luckily, they are managing to keep the library fresh as the weeks roll on. The Underworld movies will be available for subscribers beginning May 1. Feel free to check out the announcement from the official Netflix Film Twitter account for yourself.