London — Amazon is firing a new salvo in its global battle with Netflix for the booming online streaming market — and it features Julia Roberts and descendants of Russia’s tsars. The US internet shopping leader is investing an estimated $4.5bn billion (€4bn) in streaming content through its Amazon Prime Video service this year. That figure is likely to grow further as it tries to catch up to the nearly $8bn now being ploughed annually into content by industry pioneer Netflix. A part of Amazon’s strategy is a focus on Europe — still more reliant on traditional TV than the US — as it seeks to build on a subscription base that has already reached 100-million people in 200 countries. “Our goal is to just find the best, most compelling, addictive, exciting shows,” Amazon Studios chief Jennifer Salke told AFP. “It is so important for us that we create a global home for talent. It’s about the world and really starting with European territories.” Prime Video Europe vice-president Jay Marine...

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