Disney – A Real Contender Against Netflix?
As one would expect, there are no plans from Disney to go small, and when the service rolls out in late 2019, the offerings look to be gargantuan.
Finer details (including price) are still cloaked in secrecy, but the New York Times has the lowdown on what shall be offered. Jon Favreau will bring a live-action Star Wars series to the service, and a load of original movies are planned from Oscar-minted directors like Tom McCarthy (Spotlight). The true gut punch, however, will be found in the funneling of Disney movies away from their current Netflix path onto what’s currently known as “Disneyflix.” Oh boy:
To make the Disney-branded service as robust as possible, Disney will allow a lucrative licensing deal with Netflix to expire. Starting with Captain Marvel in March, all of the films that Walt Disney Studios releases in theaters will subsequently flow to the Disney streaming platform instead of to Netflix.
At this time, Disney told the NY Times that Marvel-themed TV will remain on Netflix for the foreseeable future, but it’s hard to imagine Disney letting that deal stand forever if their streaming service takes off. And with National Geographic content from the Fox acquisition likely arriving as part of the launch, Netflix should be prepared to battle Disney with all streaming forces intact.
As for the bawdier Fox offerings like The Simpsons, those shall remain on Hulu, but family fair like the Home Alone and Ice Age franchises are fair game for Disney’s taking. No one knows now who will win the Streaming Wars, but audiences should reap the benefits. Stay tuned, naturally.