The biggest studio in town just got a whole lot bigger.
This deal has been in the works for a little over a month now, but today it is finally official. Disney has purchased a large quantity of 21st Century Fox asset in a deal valued at $52.4 billion.
The deal reportedly does not include the Fox News channel, Fox Business, Fox broadcast network, or FS1 sports network. Fox will spin those properties into a newly listed company that will be spun off for shareholders. Just about everything else though is going to Disney. That includes 20th Century Fox (makers of X-Men, Avatar, and Alien films), the television studio (Modern Family, This is Us, The Simpsons), FX Networks, and National Geographic. Not to mention smaller studios like Fox Searchlight which released The Shape of Water and Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri this year.
This deal makes Disney the Walmart of the film industry. They have many of the most popular characters and franchises under one banner and it will be incredibly difficult for other studios to compete with the joint offerings of Disney and Fox. When one company owns almost 40% of the box office revenue of 2017, it might just be impossible to compete.
Of course for superhero fans, the possibilities just got even more endless. The official press release announces that X-Men, Fantastic Four, and Deadpool franchises are now part of the Disney umbrella so there is a good possibility you will see those characters invade the MCU. This is also big for Disney as far as obtaining the rights to Avatar. Disney has invested big in that franchise having a theme park and everything. Now they will own the film franchise as well. For Star Wars fans, this ignites a new hope that the original Star Wars films will be available some point without Lucas edits.
While this deal won’t affect any of Fox’s 2018 slate, because of regulations it will take about a year for the deal to go through, going forth Disney will control all of Fox’s properties. We’ll still see Deadpool 2 in all of its R-rated glory, but what the sequels will look like is anyone’s guess.