Disney's streaming service will offer original programming for popular franchises
- In an earnings call last week, Disney CEO Bob Iger announced the company is developing new original content for a previously announced video streaming service, including a live-action Star Wars television series, a new Marvel show and shows based on High School Musical and Pixar’s Monsters, Inc. franchise, according to reporting by The Verge.
- In August, when Disney announced it was ending its 2012 exclusivity deal with Netflix and creating its own competing streaming service, Netflix's stock dropped.
- Along with its rich history, Disney’s streaming service will be tough competition in the streaming video marketplace with its Pixar, Marvel and Lucasfilm catalogs alone.
Streaming video has become highly competitive with Netflix, Amazon Prime Video and Hulu arguably the current top three, but Disney is set to enter the fray holding some of the most valuable intellectual property around. The number of popular content franchises owned by Disney suggests its streaming service could have a significant competitive advantage out of the gate and the announcement of new original programming only bolsters Disney's play. For marketers, deciding where to advertise is likely only going to get more confusing in the short term. However, as the streaming space gets more crowded, the possibility of a shakeout and consolidation in the space increases.
Netflix is the current streaming leader, but Disney's entry could present some challenges. A service like Netflix can bring in name-brand Hollywood talent in front of, and behind the camera, but it still is promoting new content for the most part, although it has financed some reboots such as with the TV show “Arrested Development.” Disney’s original content for its upcoming streaming service has a distinct advantage because the first announced new shows tap the Star Wars, Marvel and Pixar franchises and other already-established brands.
Disney will also have an unprecedented integrated entertainment platform where it delivers movies to theaters, then streams them as well as related shows on its own service, offers fans a chance to experience some of these entertainment worlds in person at its theme parks and publishes books about them.
In the increasingly competitive streaming space, it is no surprise that Netflix is looking to make original content comprise half of its entire catalog by the end of 2018 and is spending $8 billion to reach that goal.
Even before Disney ended its exclusive deal with Netflix, the latter realized it needed to turn to original content – right now users scan monthly lists online on what movies and shows are coming to, and leaving, their favorite streaming services as deals expire and are made — and the result for Netflix was hits like “Stranger Things,” “House of Cards,” and “Orange is the New Black” among many others.