The Walt Disney Company grew even larger this week as it finalised a deal where it would buy Fox for $52bn dollars. Other than having far-reaching impacts on the entertainment industry as a whole, it will also have a profound impact on Netflix too.
The deal inked would see much of the 21st Century Fox empire come into control of Disney excluding three key areas, Fox Business Network, Fox News Channel and the Fox Sports Media Group.
Perhaps the biggest purchase Disney made this week was Fox’s shares of Hulu, Netflix biggest rival in the streaming world. That will now take Disney’s ownership of the streaming service to over 50%, meaning a majority control. This essentially means that moving forward, it’ll be Netflix vs Disney. In other words, Netflix is going up against the biggest media company in the world.
The biggest impact on you, the viewer, will be that Disney will now have an incentive to pull its content from Netflix. This includes ABC Studios and 20th Century Fox content.
20th Century Fox Content Leaving Netflix?
If Disney decides to pull 20th Century Fox titles from Netflix that’d mean many of the Dreamworks animated movies will be leaving such as The Boss Baby, Trolls and Home just for example. X-Men movies, the original Star Wars movies and other titles from the Fox library would essentially be barred from being added to Netflix.
Will ABC content leave Netflix?
As you’ll already know, Fox pulled most of its content from Netflix this year moving it over to Hulu and with this new deal, Disney will more than likely pull its content completely from Netflix. This has already begun with Disney stopping the contract with Netflix where new theatrical movies come to Netflix. Those titles are scheduled to leave in January 2019.
With them in the driving seat of Hulu, it’d make far more sense to keep all of their ABC shows under one roof which could mean the removal of titles like Grey’s Anatomy, Agents of Shield and Scandal. Most of these shows are already available on both Netflix and Hulu it’s worth noting.
You also have to consider that Disney now has more of a vested interest in piling in the cash to make Hulu a success. This could lead to Netflix simply being outbid on any title it wants to stream which would dwindle the Netflix library significantly.
Impact in the United Kingdom
It’s not just Hulu either, Disney also purchased Fox’s shares of Sky, the biggest satellite provider in the United Kingdom. With that, also comes Sky’s streaming service NowTV. That means Disney now has more reason to put its content onto NowTV than it does Netflix, again leaving Netflix in the dust.
Whatever way you look at it, this means Netflix has some serious competition in the coming years and while they’re making ground up with their Netflix Originals, you can’t deny that Disney’s super large back catalogue is a risk to Netflix.