On Tuesday, The Walt Disney Company announced its plan to create a new Disney-branded direct-to-consumer streaming service in 2019, which will end Netflix streaming of Disney and Pixar movies. Today, Reuters is reporting that Netflix is now in discussions with Disney to hang onto their rights to stream Marvel Studios and Lucasfilm titles beyond 2019. Netflix Chief Content Officer Ted Sarandos confirmed the discussions, stating that Disney’s move into the streaming business was expected.
“That’s why we got into the originals business five years ago, anticipating it may be not as easy a conversation with studios and networks to license their content,” Sarandos added.
Confirmed Marvel Studios titles that could stream on Netflix in 2019 and beyond include Avengers: Infinity War, Ant-Man and the Wasp, Captain Marvel, the untitled Avengers 4, untitled Spider-Man: Homecoming sequel and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3. Lucasfilm titles expected in the years to come include the untitled Han Solo Movie, Star Wars: Episode IX and other potential spin-offs, including the heavily-rumored Boba Fett adventure and a possible Obi-Wan movie.
The new Disney-branded service will become the exclusive home in the U.S. for subscription-video-on-demand viewing of the newest live action and animated movies from Disney and Pixar, beginning with the 2019 theatrical slate, which includes Toy Story 4, the sequel to Frozen, and The Lion King from Disney live-action, along with other highly-anticipated movies. Disney will also make a significant investment in an annual slate of original movies, TV shows, short-form content and other Disney-branded exclusives for the service. Additionally, the service will feature a vast collection of library content, including Disney and Pixar movies and Disney Channel, Disney Junior and Disney XD television programming.
With this strategic shift, Disney will end its distribution agreement with Netflix for subscription streaming of new releases, beginning with the 2019 calendar year theatrical slate.