As ‘Empire’ Finale Reaches Ratings High, Hulu Nabs The Show’s Online Streaming Rights

Empire Cookie Halloween Costume
Chuck Hodes/FOX
Empire Episode 6

Need more Cookie? Empire doesn’t return for Season 2 until next season, but in the meantime, Hulu has struck a deal for the exclusive streaming rights to the show. All episodes will be available on Hulu Plus for subscribers to the service starting today.

Under terms of the subscription video on-demand (SVOD) deal, all future episodes of Empire will also appear on Hulu Plus the day after its initial broadcast on Fox. (A handful of most-recent Empire episodes, but not the entire run, will also be available for regular Hulu users.)

Empire is truly a television phenomenon,” says Craig Erwich, Senior Vice President, Head of Content for Hulu. “Since its premiere, the series has remained one of the top shows on Hulu and we are ecstatic to be the exclusive streaming home to the biggest show of the year.”

The news comes a day after Empire’s Season 1 finale, which hit new series ratings highs, averaging a 6.4 rating among adults 18-49 for its two hours (up 14% from last week). That gave Fox the highest rated night on any network with regular entertainment programming in nearly three years (since May 23, 2012 with the American Idol finale, which drew a 6.4 rating as well).

According to Fox, Empire has now surpassed The Big Bang Theory to be the #1 broadcast show of the season in Adults 18-49 (with no repeats factored in).

Hulu beat out streaming rivals to strike a deal with 20th Century Fox TV Distribution. “As interest in the show continues to explode, having a place for people to watch it from the beginning is extremely important to viewers and fans,” says Gina Brogi, Executive Vice President, Worldwide Pay Television and SVOD, Twentieth Century Fox Television Distribution.