View Finder: Disney’s streaming desires detailed

Nick Broughall 11 August 2017 NEWS

disney viewfinder

This week in the world of streaming, Disney breaks it off with Netflix so it can carve its own way in a whole new world of video streaming.

Late last week, Netflix sent me a friendly little email to let me know that it had added Marvel's Dr Strange to its catalogue. Less than a week later, Marvel's parent company Disney announced that it would be ending its partnership with Netflix to fly solo, launching its own streaming service globally, and would be pulling its films from the Netflix service by the end of 2018.

If there's one company that could get away with a play like this, it's Disney. The entertainment giant owns not only its own IP and is responsible for the Marvel cinematic universe, but it also owns Lucasfilm (and therefore Star Wars), Pixar and ESPN, amongst others.

But more importantly than that, it also has history. There are decades of cinematic entertainment that many today wouldn't even know existed, and currently, has no home in the broadcast or streaming world. As a kid, I used to watch a Disney made-for-TV-movie called The B.R.A.T Patrol starring Sean Astin over and over again, and this is the kind of thing that would naturally fit in a Disney-exclusive streaming platform.

While Disney hasn't yet announced any major details on its new entertainment streaming service, we may be able to get an indication of what is on offer by casting our eye towards the UK, where Disney launched a streaming platform back in 2015.

Dubbed DisneyLife, the platform costs £4.99 a month. The service offers over 400 Disney movies, over 4,000 TV episodes, plus live TV streams from Disney Channel, Disney XD, and Disney Junior and the ability to read and listen to its 250+ book collection. Fans who just want to let it go can also enjoy a music streaming library of over 6,000 songs.

Is Disney's strategy to expand DisneyLife to a global audience? We're going to have to wait until 2019 to find out, which is the timeframe Disney gave for its new service. There are also a lot of question marks about whether the new service will be everything Disney, including Star Wars and Marvel, or if the amounts of money people pay to rebroadcast those properties means that they'll stay in wider circulation.

Trailer of the week: Kathy Bates the drug dealer

Stoner comedy from Chuck Lorre, the man behind Two and a Half Men and The Big Bang Theory starring Academy Award winner Kathy Bates? It certainly sounds interesting...

Meanwhile, Stan's got a couple of great looking shows coming up, including SMILF:

And also Jamie Foxx's White Famous:

Each week, View Finder rounds up the latest news in TV and movie streaming in Australia.

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