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How are Movies Affected by the Disney-Fox Merger?

By Flora  /  13 Mar 2019 (Wednesday)
It’s official. Walt Disney sets March 20th as the closing date for its 21st Century Fox acquisition. 

Variety reports that Disney has received the last major approval for the deal from regulators in Mexico. It expects the historic union of two of Hollywood’s pioneering studios to “become effective at 12:02 a.m. Eastern time on March 20.” The completion of the Disney-21st Century Fox deal also signals the emergence on March 19 of Fox Corporation, the new entity to emerge from the 21st Century Fox assets that Disney is not buying. Disney is also assuming about $13.8 billion in net debt from 21st Century Fox.

Walt Disney Studios will soon have control over Fox’s film, television studios and cable channels, including National Geographic and FX. Disney will also obtain Fox’s 30% holdings in Hulu, in addition to its own 30%, giving the studio a 60% majority share and own 39% in European satellite company, Sky. However, Disney was not approved by government regulators to take over Fox’s regional sports channels since it already owns ESPN.

This is a huge game-changer in the media industry and it trickles down to how moviegoers like you and I are affected by this significant merger. 

For the Marvel fans out there, this merger means that the X-Men series, Deadpool and Fantastic Four could potentially go into the Disney’s Marvel Cinematic Universe proper and may even spawn possible crossovers or other exciting narratives that could be explored in one shared universe. 

Some of Fox’s major franchises such as the Alien, Predator, Kingsman, Die Hard and Night of the Museum would also be under Disney’s new umbrella and details of the film series have not been released yet. 

The merger of these two studios means that in terms of the schedule of when the films are released depends on what strategies Disney decides to implement. Whether is it to diversify its target audience with different genre films during the same period of time, or to clearly divide them out to minimise competition, all depends on what will be the new direction of it. 

For fans who enjoy watching more of the X-Men, Deadpool and Fantastic Four series, you may have to wait a little longer considering Marvel Studios is already releasing three films a year, and the superhero film fatigue has already taken effect with its audiences in the over-saturated market. 

A new class photo, maybe?
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