20th Century Studios' films will soon be going to both Disney and Warner Bros. According to Variety, Disney and WarnerMedia have made a deal to share the streaming rights for Fox's films between Disney+/Hulu and HBO Max until 2022.
Under the new deal, HBO will share co-exclusive rights with Disney for films from 20th Century Studios and Searchlight Pictures. At the same time, HBO will continue to have a pay-one TV window exclusivity for about half of Fox's films through 2022. As part of the deal, Disney agreed to speed up the start of the pay-one window for the films on HBO. The deal is expected to end after one year, since Disney wants to have their 20th Century Studios films exclusive to their streaming services.
The current deal between HBO and 20th Century Fox was supposed to expire in 2015. However, in 2012, it was announced that both companies had made a deal to continue their partnership for the next ten years. This was before Disney's acquisition of 20th Century Fox in 2019. One of Disney's main motivation for wanting to purchase Fox was to increase the number of franchises and content for their streaming services. In 2020, Disney reorganized the company to put an emphasis on the company's streaming content.
However, Disney CEO Bob Chapek said that the restructuring was not a response to the COVID-19 pandemic. "I would say COVID accelerated the rate at which we made this transition," said Chapek in 2020, "but this transition was going to happen anyway."
The first film in the new deal to be streamed on both a Disney service and HBO Max will be the animated film Ron's Gone Wrong (directed by Sarah Smith and Jean-Philippe Vine). The next film in the Predator franchise, Prey (directed by Dan Trachtenberg) will also be available on Hulu and HBO Max in 2022.
Ron's Gone Wrong will be available on both Disney+ and HBO Max on December 15.
The film premiered at London Film Festival in October.
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