When looking back on this week years from now, historians may see this as the time that our white-gloved, mouse overlord truly set the stage for world domination. To put it in simpler terms, Disney is having a good week. Star Wars: The Last Jedi is hitting theaters, projected to rack up huge box office numbers and continue to prove that the $4 billion price tag for Lucasfilm was a steal. And it's a good thing Disney's getting a huge cash infusion, because it's about to make a major purchase. A once-dead deal has been revived, and Disney is on track to make a Thursday announcement of its purchase of the 21st Century Fox film and television assets in a deal that could be worth upwards of $60 billion.
While not necessarily an exact number, the Fox assets Disney is purchasing are believed to be above that $60 billion mark. Following Comcast dropping out of the running on Monday, 21st Century Fox and Disney are smoothly sailing towards a Thursday deal, according to CNBC. So a deal that was not currently in talks a month ago is now on the fast track in a massive entertainment industry shakeup. It almost feels as if fan excitement at Disney obtaining Fox properties willed this thing to the finish line, but it was probably the $60 billion. This deal's implications are both monumental in impact and broad in scope as made evident by such a gargantuan price tag. The deal could even see a Fox executive eventually replacing Disney luminary and CEO, Bob Iger.
A significant portion of the talk and excitement since this deal was first reported has been what it means for each studio's respective comic book universes. The prospect of seeing a good Fantastic Four film or seeing Wolverine mix it up with the Avengers has had fans salivating for years. This reality has potential drawbacks and unintended consequences, but it looks like its happening, so we're about to see what Kevin Feige can do when he has new toys to play with. But Marvel isn't the only thing impacted here. Avatar would come under the Disney umbrella and join the Pandora theme park, and Disney would gain the full distribution rights to Star Wars: A New Hope.
But while comic book movie fans play out the possibilities in their heads like playing with a bunch of new action figures, the real force of this deal is all business. Disney is launching their own Netflix-rivaling streaming service in the coming years. The streaming service was initially valued at a potential $25 billion. But now, with an additional $60 billion worth of assets, it's looking more like a must have service. This provides not only the rights for properties to produce new content, but an enormous amount of library titles to bolster the catalog of Disney's streaming service. A service that was once expected to be cheaper than Netflix will now have substantially more volume to justify a higher price.
We'll keep you updated on this story as it develops and let you know what it means for the future. This deal is happening and I imagine much like the Lucasfilm purchase, years down the line, $60 billion will seem like money well spent.
Nick grew up in Maryland has degrees in Film Studies and Communications. His life goal is to walk the earth, meet people and get into adventures. He’s also still looking for The Adventures of Pete and Pete season 3 on DVD if anyone has a lead.
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