When Disney recently announced that it was ending its exclusivity deal with Netflix and moving all Disney- and Pixar-branded content over to a new Disney-owned streaming service, it was unclear exactly whether Big D would also walk off with the Marvel and Star Wars movies that Netflix currently gets exclusive streaming rights to. At the time, Netflix was still hoping it could reach some sort of custody deal with Disney, but it looks like Iron Man and Kylo Ren will be living with Mickey and Nemo at their new house.
Speaking earlier today at a Bank of America/Merrill Lynch conference on media and entertainment, Disney CEO Bob “Bob” Iger clarified [via Deadline.com] that the eventual Disney streaming service — which has yet to be named — will have “the entire output of the studio — animation, live action and Disney including Pixar, Star Wars and all of the Marvel films.”
You’ll notice that Iger says “all of the Marvel films,” but does not make the same qualifier regarding the Star Wars titles. As things stand now, while Disney owns the overall Star Wars franchise and produces all the new movies and shows, Twentieth Century Fox still has the distribution rights for the original two trilogies through May 2020 and indefinite control over the distribution and home video rights for the original 1977 Star Wars film.
Currently, all new Marvel and Disney/Pixar movies get an exclusive streaming window on Netflix at some point after those titles have hit the rent/buy home video market but before they show up on premium cable stations like HBO or Starz. Some older movies will also cycle in and out of the Netflix library, along with Disney-produced shows under these brands. For example, right now Netflix subscribers in the U.S. can watch Doctor Strange, Rogue One, and Captain America: Civil War.
There are also the Netflix/Marvel original shows like Jessica Jones, Daredevil, and Luke Cage. Iger’s comments did not address this episodic content, but in a statement to Consumerist, Netflix explained that the eventual end of the Disney deal does not affect the Marvel TV shows the two companies have made together.
“As with Disney films, U.S. Netflix members will have access to Marvel and Star Wars films on the service through the end of 2019 and 2020 in many cases,” says Netflix in an email to Consumerist. “This includes all new films shown theatrically through the end of 2018. We continue to do business with the Walt Disney Company on many fronts, including our ongoing relationship with Marvel TV.”
(Updated to include statement from Netflix regarding original Marvel episodic content.)