The Walt Disney Co has revealed plans to offer United States consumers a streaming bundle of Disney+, ESPN+, and advertising-supported Hulu for $12.99 (€11.60) a month, beginning November 12th, setting out its stall in what is likely to become a fiercely-fought battle with competing SVoD services.
In spite of this news, the crown jewel for Disney is still the Disney+ service itself that will be the streaming home for Marvel, Star Wars, Pixar and so much more content.
The shortfall was a shock to investors who were counting on Disney's market-dominating theme parks and films to shoulder the burden of growth as the company goes head to head with Netflix Inc.in streaming. The Hollywood Reporter mentions that sources say the studio could release 10 or more movies a year once the kinks are worked out, but that "half or more" of those releases could open on the Disney+ streaming service or Hulu (a distinction likely centered around the film's content).
Disney chief Bob Iger revealed the plan for the bundle during Disney's quarterly earnings call with Wall Street analysts.
Its biggest digital bet, a family-friendly subscription service called Disney+, is scheduled to debut in November.
Disney recently acquired Fox and the Home Alone, Night at the Museum, Diary of a Wimpy Kid and Cheaper by the Dozen franchises from the Fox library will all be rebooted. Live-action remakes of Disney animated films that don't have as strong of a nostalgia pull like Lady in the Tramp are heading to the streaming service, as are series adaptations of mid-budget hits like Love, Simon. But after today's announcement, we're getting a clearer picture as to how Disney plans to manage all that content under its control. It is an interesting selection of franchises though, with something like Night at the Museum still being very fresh in most people's minds, but classics like Home Alone are old enough to warrant the reboot treatment.
Other factors Iger and Disney officials attributed to the decline in visitors were one-day ticket costs being raised "substantially" and the ongoing integration of Fox's entertainment assets.
The executive added: "We feel it's important for us to achieve scale quickly".
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