nsucurrent.com February 20, 2018

Disney Plans To Swipe Its Powerful (And Lucrative) Heroes From Netflix

08 September 2017, 12:42 | Lowell Little

Say Goodbye to Star Wars and Marvel Movies on Netflix

Marvel and Star Wars films will be Disney streaming exclusives

Iger participated in a Q&A session at the Bank of America Merrill Lynch 2017 Media, Communications & Entertainment Conference, and he shared information about Disney's upcoming streaming service and plans for Marvel and Star Wars films.

Disney said last month it would launch its own streaming service and stop providing new movies to Netflix starting in 2019. Disney CEO Bob Iger said thousands of TV episodes and hundreds of movies will be available, though shows from Disney's ABC network aren't coming to the service.

It will also make four or five original series and three or four "television movies" of the type that now run on its Disney Channel, Mr. Iger added. CMCSA, -6.07% executive Matthew Strauss said that direct-to-consumer streaming offerings, potentially like Disney's forthcoming service, could work well in a new kind of bundle, and that Comcast would be open to working with Disney in partnerships to offer the service.

Obviously, this is another blow to Netflix, who was originally set to host all the new Disney movies, including Star Wars, Marvel and Pixar, through at least 2020. Iger also narrowed down the launch window for the new service, saying he anticipates it will be ready by late 2019. In addition to Star Wars and Marvel products, it's good to hear that Disney will also be producing original Disney content for the service as well.

Iger said Thursday that the company was initially undecided about whether or not to move Star Wars and Marvel films, according to Variety. But Disney is leaving a lot of money on the table by not doing a deal with Netflix or one of its competitors. Previously, Disney had left the door open to the possibility that streaming rights to those movies would be licensed to Netflix or another third party.

It comes as Disney reported a near 9 percent fall in quarterly profit, pulled down by higher programming costs and declining subscribers at its flagship sports channel ESPN.

Investors weren't pleased at all with the EPS outlook, as Walt Disney Co shares were trading at $96.41 per share on Thursday afternoon, down $5.09 (-5.01%). With the service not slated to launch for over a year, though, Disney still has plenty of time to figure that out. Most of the kid-friendly content or biggest movie releases will now be on one service; a lot of the adult TV, movie, and popular original content will still be on Netflix. Most importantly, he confirmed that all of the MCU movies and the Star Wars movies are going to be on the service from the start.

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