Too much of a good thing? Disney company officially acquires Fox

Castle-3-DPSBy now you’ve probably seen the meme of Mickey Mouse wearing Thanos’ Infinity Gauntlet from “Infinity War,” with the Infinity Stones symbolizing the different franchises/studios Disney has acquired thus far — Star Wars, Marvel, etc.

Last week, the Walt Disney Company officially added another “Infinity Stone” to the gauntlet; the company’s acquisition of 21st Century Fox was finalized March 20.

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I’ve seen a variety of responses to this news. For some fans, it’s a positive move. Disney can now integrate the X-Men and the Fantastic Four into the Marvel Cinematic Universe, should they choose to do so (they’re definitely going to choose to do so). However, there are also concerns about Disney becoming a creative and economic monopoly. Will they drown out competitors and stifle creativity?

I’m still not sure how I feel about the acquisition overall, but I’m leaning more towards the negative. I’d like to see a really good Fantastic Four movie, and I believe Disney will make that happen. On the other hand, while “Infinity Gauntlet Mickey” is a funny joke, I don’t know that I like the idea of Disney exercising that much control over content. Disney is already an entertainment powerhouse, and we’ve seen some examples of Disney strong-arming movie theaters.

My hope is that Disney continues to allow for diversity of content. Fox has some great films in its recent repertoire: “Logan,” the Planet of the Apes reboot series, “The Martian,” and “Kingsman: The Secret Service” (the sequel…not so much). Not to mention classics like “Alien” and the original Star Wars trilogy.

Some of these are family oriented, some are not. It’s important to have great movies for all ages, and I appreciate Disney’s history of kid-friendly films. However, it’s also important to allow for darker, more serious content for adults that covers deeper themes. I want films like “Logan” to still exist.

The Fantastic Four will fold nicely into the MCU, but I’d not actually super keen on adding the X-Men into that cinematic universe. I love the Marvel movies and the way they tie together and have a common feel/overarching narrative. But I don’t want all superhero movies to feel the same, and I appreciate that the X-Men franchise was its own thing.

I feel like Disney has done a great job letting Lucasfilm be creatively independent, so I don’t think we have to worry about all new Disney/Fox films having the exact same feel. And Pixar has produced a number of excellent animated films after their Disney acquisition in 2006 (though there’s definitely a lot more sequels).

I also have mixed feelings about Disney’s new streaming service. As a consumer, it is a bit frustrating to have to keep signing up for different streaming services in order to access all the content you want to watch. Despite my protests about this trend, I’ve already decided to cave and sign up for the Disney streaming service (I’ll admit it, exclusive Star Wars content always gets me).

But I worry about Netflix’s future without access to the Disney or (presumably) Fox catalogs, and I don’t want strong original projects like “Stranger Things” to go away if Netflix were to one day fold. (“Daredevil” and the other Marvel TV shows already have.)

In short, I don’t have insider expertise about how the entertainment industry works behind the scenes, so I don’t really know how the Fox acquisition will impact what films we will (or won’t) be seeing. Maybe we won’t really see much change in content, though we should still be concerned about Disney using its bargaining power to force movie theaters into agreements that are more in Disney’s best interest than the theater’s (i.e. making them show a certain film for a minimum number of weeks and provide a certain percentage of ticket prices).

This particular paragraph from a Wikipedia article particularly concerns me:

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As a film fan, what do you think? What are the positives and negatives of this deal? What are you excited about and concerned about? How will this impact the entertainment industry?

7 thoughts on “Too much of a good thing? Disney company officially acquires Fox

  1. I’m very interested in reading people’s thoughts on the Disney-Fox deal. There’s industry stuff that I’d like to know more about. I did hear about Disney’s tactics with movie theaters. I think there will be a number of jobs lost in the merger. Disney is in the business of blockbuster movies so I think there could be a concern about fewer movies with less mass-appeal coming out. Great post!

    • Thank you! I’m really curious to see what the impact of this is, from both a consumer and an industry insider perspective. I think there could be a variety of impacts from this deal, both good and bad. It will be interesting to see how it all plays out, and how other studios respond.

  2. Yes, exactly – competitors will be drowned out and creativity stifled while Disney hold this monopoly
    Business is business, but my break into this industry looks increasingly unlikely by the day so it’s fast becoming none of my business
    Ticket prices are getting higher while the standard of moviemaking is getting lower – Infinity War was a rare masterpiece surrounded by too many recent disappointing movies. Therefore, it looks like Avengers: Endgame will mark the End to my 40 years of cinema-going!
    Anyway, liked the Mickey Mouse meme!
    With Marvel and Star Wars now under the same roof, perhaps the title should read:
    Iron Mandalorian…? 😉

    • Iron Mandalorian…I’d love to see that crossover! 😉 ha ha

      It is discouraging to see movie ticket prices keep climbing, making it harder for families to enjoy a day at the theater. 😦

      I actually just signed up for a membership plan at my local movie theater chain; pay a flat rate per month and see up to three movies a week. I think that’s definitely going to help!

      • 3 movies a week?! I could only manage 3 movies @ the cinema thro the whole of 2018!
        Yes, there are chaps of my age who go watch movies like Shazam! and Bumblebee on their own – I’m not 1 of them 😉
        Long ago, as a young office girl, my mother could watch news bulletins and B-movies as well as the Main Feature at any cinema (cos she had no TV at home!) – how times have changed!!

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