The soap opera ended: Disney has acquired most of 21st Century Fox. In early November it was reported that Fox had rejected the attempt to buy Disney, however, the negotiation continued and after a new offer, both parties began to reach an agreement that has finally been announced today. Now, what exactly has Disney bought? We go with the details .
For a figure of 52,400 million dollars , Disney will take over the entire film studio of 20th Century Fox (including the subsidiaries Searchlight, Home Entertainment and animation company Blue Sky) and the intellectual properties of it, ranging from the X-Men or Deadpool until the sagas of ‘Alien’ or ‘Avatar‘. It also acquires FX television channels, which include such popular titles as ‘The Simpsons’ or ‘Futurama’.
“We are honored and grateful that Rupert Murdoch has entrusted us with the future of the businesses he has been building throughout his life, and we are excited by this extraordinary opportunity to significantly increase our portfolio of beloved franchises and brands, as well as greatly increase our growing direct-to-consumer content offerings. ”
“The agreement also substantially expands our international reach, enabling us to offer world-class narratives and innovative distribution platforms to more consumers in key markets around the world.”
“The acquisition of this stellar business collection from 21st Century Fox reflects growing consumer demand for a rich diversity of entertainment experiences that are now more absorbing, accessible and practical than ever before.”
Although in the official note of Disney the Fantastic Four are included , the question is not clear; Fox had distribution rights but the production rights remain in the hands of Constantin Films . Unless sold, the characters are still far from Marvel. The alternative is to reach an agreement similar to that they have with Sony to use Spider-Man, or wait for the rights to expire and return to Marvel; for that they must spend seven years without a movie of the Fantastic Four. That is, Constantin has until 2022 to produce another film.
The possibility that Marvel can bring the X-Men, Deadpool or the Fantastic Four together with his current group of superheroes in a mega-movie of the Avengers, is very exciting for fans of comic book adaptations and the cinema palomitero, but it is also a risk to the quality and richness of cinema. There is less competition and, as James Mangold pointed out, Disney can end the adult films that Fox was doing because they can not sell dolls. But we’ll see, it’s early to become pessimistic…
The purchase of 60% of Fox is the latest in a series of operations that have made Disney the most powerful studio in Hollywood; they seized Pixar in 2006, Marvel in 2009 and Lucasfilm in 2012. With the current Disney catalog, the announcement of its own streaming platform makes even more sense and presents itself as an important competitor for Netflix, HBO and Amazon.