Disney announced its plans on launching its own streaming service on Tuesday. The famous channel will fully remove its content from Netflix in 2019, it will also start its own service that year.
The company also announced the launching of a sports streaming service, and it’s also considering an individual service for the Marvel and Star Wars franchises.
Taking its own separate way
The Mouse House is launching its own streaming service for its central Disney and Pixar brands, which would allow it to charge consumers directly for access to the popular content. The announcement was made by Robert A. Iger, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of The Walt Disney Company. The move follows the company’s plan to acquire majority ownership of BAMTech, LLC.
“This acquisition and the launch of our direct-to-consumer services mark an entirely new growth strategy for the Company,” he said. “One that takes advantage of the incredible opportunity that changing technology provides us to leverage the strength of our great brands.”
The only subscription streaming service will kick off in 2019 with the theatrical slate. It will include new animated and live action Disney and Pixar movies in Disney’s own app. ‘Toy Story 4’ and the sequel to huge hit ‘Frozen’ will be available in the app. Older movies will be there too, as well as shows from TV channels Dinesy Channel, Disney Junior and Disney XD.
Disney might bring more of its properties, particularly its Marvel superheroes and the Star Wars franchise, under its wing, and could even offer them as separate streaming services.
CEO Robert Iger said Disney is considering whether it should continue licensing Marvel and Star Wars movies to outside services like Netflix, move them into the Disney app or develop individual services for them.
The Disney service will be available in “multiple markets” outside the U.S. as well.
The channel also includes sports
Disney has been weighing on launching its own streaming service for a while. In 2016, the company purchased a 33% stake in BAMTech, which is a marketing and streaming service. The company is now planning to buy a majority stake in the company for $1.58 billion to launch its own streaming services, including an ESPN streaming service in 2018.
“The media landscape is increasingly defined by direct relationships between content creators and consumers,” said Iger.
The ESPN-branded multi-sport service would offer a huge array of sports programming, featuring approximately 10,000 live regional, national, and international games and events a year,. Including Major League Baseball, National Hockey League, Major League Soccer, Grand Slam tennis, and college sports.
Individual sports packages will also be available for purchase, including MLB.TV, NHL.TV and MLS Live.
“Ultimately, we envision this will become a dynamic sports marketplace that will grow and be increasingly customizable, allowing sports fans to pick and choose content that reflects their personal interests,” said Iger.
The new service will be accessed through an enhanced version of the current ESPN app. In addition to the multi-sport service, the ESPN app will include the news, highlights, and scores that fans enjoy today.
Netflix responded to the announcemet
Following Disney’s announcement, Netflix released a statement.
“US Netflix members will have access to Disney films on the service through the end of 2019, including all new films that are shown theatrically through the end of 2018,” it read.,” it read. “We continue to do business with the Walt Disney Company globally on many fronts, including our ongoing relationship with Marvel TV.”
Disney is ending an exclusive earlier movie deal with Netflix, which included exclusive streaming service for Disney, Marvel, Lucasfilm and Pixar movies. Netflix today has grown into an entertainment juggernaut in its own right, however, as it focuses more on its own exclusive programming.
Netflix already seemed to be bracing for the potential loss of the Disney movie rights earlier this week when it announced its first-ever acquisition, the purchase of Millarworld, a comic book publishing company that will develop films and kids shows based on its portfolio of character.
By owning its own franchises, Netflix is hoping to reduce its rapidly growing content budget. The company has already committed to spending $16bn on the production and licensing of films and TV shows over the next five years.