So fans have had concerns about Disney buying up everything in sight since the House of Mouse purchased Marvel for four billion dollars several years ago. And while some might argue that Disney’s purchase of the floundering comic book publisher is the best thing that ever happened to their properties, others, such as myself, would be loath to agree with that. The Marvel Cinematic Universe is, for the most part, lazily written claptrap, and the comic books have become little more than vehicles for pushing political agendas.
Fan fears are well founded. Look at what happened to Star Wars. The Last Jedi is a monumental heap of garbage, with the only hope in sight being the possibility that J.J. Abrams may be able to save the franchise with Episode IX.
But Marvel and Star Wars are what the fans are focusing on so heavily. Yes, Disney will now have the rights to all the major Marvel characters. The Fantastic Four, the mutants, Deadpool… all the characters fans have been wanting to see in the MCU are now available. For Star Wars, the original films now fall under the Disney banner as well, which means we could get a re-release of the Original Trilogy, without the additions from the Special Editions, some time in the future.
However, Disney just got much more than just Marvel and Star Wars stuff.
First of all, that James Cameron movie about blue cat people, which had already struck a deal to appear in Disney’s Animal Kingdom theme park, is part of the acquisition. So imagine how that sequel will look with the visual effects powers of Industrial Light and Magic behind it.
There are also several other franchises that go along with this deal, including Alien, Predator, Planet of the Apes, Die Hard, Home Alone, Kingsman, and Independence Day. Disney now own Fox Searchlight as well, which may finally earn them some artistic credit with fans of independent films.
But where the acquisition really shines for Disney is in television. Disney has purchased all of Fox’s television stations and production houses, outside of Fox News and sports. This means that Modern Family (which is produced by Fox), This Is Us, Empire, The X-Files, The Gifted, and many other shows now fall under Disney’s banner. In addition, Disney will own the FX, FXX and FXM networks and production houses, giving Disney Homeland, American Horror Story, Legion, The Americans, It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia, and more.
Of course, Disney also acquires animation, which hands them the keys to Bob’s Burgers, Family Guy, American Dad!, Futurama, King of the Hill, and the great animation juggernaut that is The Simpsons.
We can’t talk about Disney getting TV rights from Fox, though, without talking about Firefly.
Yes, people are going to bring it up. Yes, Disney does now have the rights to the show. Yes, they could restart production, or make a new series, or make more movies if they want to.
Get over it, little Browncoat. Go cry like it’s Unification Day.
I say this as a proud fan of the series: it’s time to let it go.
Now, the real reason Disney wanted Fox: streaming.
Before this deal, Disney owned a thirty percent stake in Hulu, with Fox owning another thirty percent. Now, those percentages merge, giving Disney the controlling stake in the company. Which means that Disney will have control over what content goes on Hulu and how much it’ll cost to use the service.
So, the big question: what does Disney’s acquisition of all these Fox properties mean for us, as fans?
It means that Disney has the opportunity to bring all of this stuff back, like they did with Star Wars, and either give it to the right people to produce and direct and write and come up with something wonderful, like they did with Star Wars for The Force Awakens and Rogue One; or give it to the wrong people to produce and direct and write to come up with something that makes us all pine for the days of our youth, before these things that we loved were so ruined, like they did with Star Wars for the Last Jedi.
Basically, our franchises are in the same boat they were in before. Except now the boat’s being steered by Mickey Mouse.