Disney and Sony Pictures announced on Wednesday an important licensing agreement that will provide library as well as upcoming movie and TV titles for Disney, Hulu, ABC and FX, as well as other Disney cable channels. The pact, which covers everything from « Spider-Man » to « Jumanji », is still a sign that Sony will not launch its own streaming service.
The deal grants Disney US streaming and TV Rights to Sony’s new theatrical releases from 2022 to 2026 and begins for every film that follows its Pay One TV window. Earlier this month, Sony and Netflix announced a deal to broadcast the studio’s theatrical films to Netflix during the Pay One window. This begins after films leave theaters and have been released on DVD / VOD.
As part of these two offers, the distribution of Sony theatrical films is as follows: first in theaters, then on VOD / DVD, then on Netflix and then on Disney.
In addition, Disney-Sony will bring a « significant number » of Sony library titles to Disney’s streaming services and TV channels, including the Jumanji and Hotel Transylvania franchises. Most notably, Disney will have access to Sony’s Marvel titles, including Spider-Man. Library titles will appear on Hulu as early as June.
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The previous Netflix-Sony deal gives Netflix its first glimpse into Sony’s library titles. This latest deal suggests Sony has the ability to choose which library titles go to Netflix and which to Disney.
« This groundbreaking agreement confirms the unique and enduring value of our films to movie lovers and the platforms and networks that support serve them, « said Keith Le Goy, president of Sony Pictures Entertainment, Worldwide Distribution and Networks. “We are very excited to be working with Disney to deliver our titles to their viewers and subscribers. This agreement cements a key element of our film distribution strategy, which is to maximize the value of each of our films by bringing them to consumers across all windows with a variety of key partners. “
The deal strengthens Disney’s position in the streaming wars by not only giving the company more content for Disney and Hulu, but also fulfilling audience expectations that Spider-Man should match the rest of the Marvel Cinematic Universe will live on Disney.
« This pioneering multi-year, platform-independent agreement gives the Disney Media and Entertainment Distribution team a tremendous amount of flexibility and programming capabilities to bring Sony’s rich selection of award-winning action and family films to our direct-to-play Leverage consumer services and linear channels, ”said Chuck Saftler, director of business operations for ABC, Freeform, FX Networks and Acquisitions in DMED’s Networks division, who played a key role in the negotiations. « This is a win for fans who will benefit from the ability to access the best content from two of Hollywood’s most prolific studios across a variety of viewing platforms and experiences. »
The Netflix-Sony deal was a strong indicator of this that Sony would not bring its own streamer on the market. This latest deal is an even stronger argument: with new releases and library titles loaned to two heavyweights, Sony wouldn’t have much to offer on its own. Through the deal with Netflix, Sony will also produce an additional list of films specifically for the streamer.
However, the Disney-Sony deal comes on the same day as reports of leaked information suggesting Sony PlayStation owners are over a new service called PlayStation Plus Video Pass could soon offer movies. It’s still unclear exactly what that might look like, but the PlayStation branding means the service is unlikely to be in contact with general audience services like Netflix.
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