In early August, Disney revealed that it plans to pull all of its movies from Netflix and launch its own streaming service in 2019. Users were understandably curious as to which Disney-owned brands that might include, particularly once Disney CEO Bob Iger referenced the company's interest in potentially branching off Marvel and Star Wars into their own, separate streaming services.
Today, Iger cleared up any confusion by confirming Marvel and Star Wars films will be available on the upcoming Disney-branded streaming app (via Deadline). Current films in these franchises on Netflix -- like Doctor Strange and Rogue One: A Star Wars Story -- will be removed from Netflix and arrive on the Disney platform when it launches in 2019. It's still unclear at what point between now and 2019 Disney will begin removing these films from Netflix.
Last month Reuters reported that Netflix was in "active discussions" with Disney to keep Marvel and Star Wars films on the popular streaming platform, but it appears those talks have now fallen through.
Films from Marvel and Star Wars that now go to Netflix will move to Disney’s planned ad-free direct-to-consumer streaming service, CEO Bob Iger said today at an investor gathering.
“We’re going to launch big, and we’re going to launch hot” by late 2019, he told the Bank of America Merrill Lynch 2017 Media, Communications & Entertainment Conference.
The outcome for Marvel and Star Wars TV shows was not specified, but Iger said that the Disney streaming app "will have the entire output of the studio — animation, live action and Disney including Pixar, Star Wars and all of the Marvel films,” potentially including television content. Right now, users can watch Marvel and Star Wars TV shows on Netflix including Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and Star Wars: The Clone Wars.
Last month Iger confirmed that Disney "has no plans" to remove any of the Netflix-owned and created Marvel series from the service, including Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, Iron Fist, The Defenders, and The Punisher. These original Netflix shows were formed under a separate deal from the one created in 2012, meaning they'll continue to be Netflix original shows for the forseeable future. Iger said Disney is even potentially willing to license even more Marvel characters for future shows.
On the Disney branded side of things, the app will include four or five "mostly live action" original movies, as well as four or five original Disney TV shows. Besides the new content, the service will of course also house the company's back catalogue, spanning nearly 500 films, 7,000 episodes of television, and "thousands" of short films. Neither Disney nor Iger has mentioned the subscription cost for the service yet, but the CEO said a price will be coming "in the months ahead."
Top Rated Comments
Disney is pulling it's shows from Netflix to make their own service. Amazon is buying their own original programming to get people to subscribe to Prime. ESPN is launching their own streaming service. Hulu is buying their own original programming. Netflix is buying their own exclusives and original programming. There's rumors of Apple buying exclusive programming.
By the time these services are mature, the market will be massively segmented; people will need to buy separate subscriptions to Netflix, Prime, Hulu, ESPN, and Disney, among likely others (Apple?), many of these having huge overlap, just to get access to a couple shows.
And when people say: "X and Y have a 99% overlap in shows I want to watch- except this one exclusive show"...they won't want to sign up for a whole new service just to watch one show.
So what will they do? For many people, pirate.
Netflix has massively reduced film piracy rates just like Steam has reduced game piracy rates. Why? Because, as Gabe Newell put it, piracy is partially a service problem. Piracy rates increase when piracy becomes more convenient than the traditional product. Harsh DRM or poor distribution frequently drives up piracy rates.
Unless these new services are very cheap...when the digital market fragments and people don't want to spend enormous amounts of money to subscribe to redundant services just to get access to a show...I'm going to predict high piracy rates of those shows.
Netflix, $7.99 - $11.99/month
Amazon Video, $8.99/month or $99/year
HBO Now, $14.99/month
ShowTime, $10.99/month or $109.90/year
DirecTV Now, $35 - $70/month
Sling TV, $20 - $40/month
Sony Playstation Vue, $39.99 - $74.99/month
YouTube TV, $35/month
So many options, with so much overlap.
There is even a few others I didn't price out here like Starz and CBS All Access.
You'd have to subscribe to at least 4-5 of these to access most exclusive programming and get a wide enough breadth of content to match comparable cable TV subscriptions.
Depending on what you choose, it may not cost any less than a cable TV subscription, which, I would imagine, is the main reason most people switch to streaming options and away from cable TV services.
And of course you'd need to be paying for an internet service connection on top of all of that.
It is definitely a mess. And now Disney is trying to add yet another subscription service to the lineup...