Disney has announced that it will launch a streaming service in 2019 and CEO Bob Iger reveals that it will be "substantially cheaper" than Netflix, reports CNET. Iger also commented on Disney’s plans for content.
Disney’s streaming service
Disney will launch its stand-alone streaming service sometime in 2019 with the goal of rolling it out globally at some point in the future. The company announced its plans early in the process because it will have to terminate agreements with partners such as Netflix.
With the move, Disney stands to become a direct competitor to Netflix. The latter has more than 100 million subscribers, a customer base that is expected to be considerably larger in 2019. One of the ways Disney is planning to compete with Netflix, will be to undercut on price, Bob Iger confirmed at the company’s quarterly earnings call.
- "I can say that our plan on the Disney side is to price this substantially below where Netflix is. That is in part reflective of the fact that it will have substantially less volume," said Bob Iger, CEO, Disney.
Disney owns the rights to Star Wars under Lucasfilm as well as all movies by Pixar (Toy Story, Inside Out, Monster Inc.) and most of the Marvel (Avengers, Thor) library. Disney has over the last decade or so acquired all three companies.
Once it launches in 2019, Disney’s streaming service will offer a library of very high-quality content but the library will not be as broad as Netflix’s. The price will reflect that, Iger said.
- “It'll have a lot of high quality because of the brands and the franchises that will be on it that we've talked about. But it'll simply launch with less volume, and the price will reflect that."
New Star Wars trilogy
At the earnings call, Disney also confirmed that it has signed a deal with Rian Johnson to create a new Star Wars trilogy. Johnson is the writer-director of ‘The Last Jedi’.
Besides the three new movies, Disney has greenlit a live-action Star Wars TV show. It will together with movies and other upcoming shows, including a TV series based on the ‘Monsters, Inc.’ universe and a show based on the Marvel universe, help form the foundation of the streaming service.
Disney added that it its main goal initially will be to attract as many subscribers to its streaming service as possible through a strong line-up of content and an attractive price. The company has not commented on how the streaming service will affect its relationship with exhibitors and the 90-days theatrical window.