Disney Reportedly Had Talks To Buy Most of 20th Century Fox, Could Acquire ‘X-Men,’ ‘Avatar,’ and More
The new report from CNBC reveals 20th Century Fox has been holding talks over selling portions of the company to Disney. The discussions have reportedly stemmed from Fox’s desire to move away from the entertainment landscape and shift focus to news and sports primarily, which senior management claims would “compete more effectively in the current marketplace.” That means Disney could purchase everything from the company except Fox News, Fox broadcast network (including local affiliates), and Fox Sports, which would pose competition to Disney’s ESPN. What the Mouse House would acquire includes 20th Century Fox’s film and TV studio divisions, as well as FX Networks, National Geographic, and U.K. assets Star and B Sky B.
If this deal were to happen – and that’s an if, as things have reportedly only been discussed thus far – it would be huge for Disney, and for the film and TV biz. The Mouse House would gain rights to X-Men, Deadpool, and Fantastic Four, finally bringing the mutants into MCU. That’s not all, though. Disney would potentially add Fox’s other major franchises to their roster, including Alien, Avatar (Disney currently only has theme park rights), The Planet of the Apes, and Kingsman. And then there’s Fox Searchlight to consider as well. As far as TV goes, Disney could also own The Simpsons and Family Guy, along with other Fox and FX series. As if Disney wasn’t already an empire on the big and small screen.
The potential here for Disney isn’t just bringing massive movie franchises and TV properties under their wing, but streaming rights. Over the summer, Disney announced plans to launch their own streaming service in 2019 for the studio’s live-action and animated properties. Now imagine if Disney could add all of Fox’s film and TV titles to that streaming catalogue. That would be huge, stripping every other streaming service of not just Disney titles, but those under 20th Century Fox, and yes, presumably including all your favorite Fox and FX shows, too.
However, it’s worth noting that a lot is unknown at this point and these sale discussions, which have reportedly been ongoing for the past few weeks, are not currently active, as Ben Fritz of the Wall Street Journal said over Twitter. That doesn’t mean the talks won’t pick up again. Stay tuned should more developments come in.
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