Disney to pull movies from Netflix and launch its own streaming service
An ESPN-branded streaming platform is also on deck
Disney is cutting out the middleman.
The company announced Tuesday that it will be removing its films from Netflix and launching its own Disney-branded streaming service in 2019.
The new platform will become the exclusive home in the U.S. for subscription streaming of Disney and Pixar movies, beginning with the 2019 theatrical slate, which includes Toy Story 4, the sequel to Frozen, and the live-action Lion King remake. It will also feature library titles as well as original movies, TV shows, and short-form content.
In addition, Disney will be rolling out an ESPN-branded sports streaming service in early 2018. It will feature approximately 10,000 live regional, national, and international games and events a year, including content from Major League Baseball, the National Hockey League, Major League Soccer, Grand Slam tennis, and college sports.
Disney is acquiring a majority stake in the digital media company BAMTech to power the streaming products.
“The media landscape is increasingly defined by direct relationships between content creators and consumers, and our control of BAMTech’s full array of innovative technology will give us the power to forge those connections, along with the flexibility to quickly adapt to shifts in the market,” Disney chief Bob Iger said in a statement. “This acquisition and the launch of our direct-to-consumer services mark an entirely new growth strategy for the company, one that takes advantage of the incredible opportunity that changing technology provides us to leverage the strength of our great brands.”