After months of negotiations and regulatory procedures, the highly anticipated merger between the Walt Disney Company and 21st Century Fox has officially closed. They closed their $71.3 billion acquisition of the major entertainment assets of 21st Century Fox, the companies said, combining some of Hollywood’s best-known studios, characters and franchises as media companies look to get bigger to better compete in a world where shows and movies are increasingly streamed.
Disney will now control Fox’s movie and television production studios, as well as its FX cable network, Fox Searchlight label and National Geographic properties. Now, the X-Men and Fantastic Four can exist alongside The Avengers in the MCU. Disney can possibly revive some other great franchises. There are good things going on here.
Disney released a statement about the acquisition earlier this evening with boss Bob Iger calling it a “historic moment” for the House of Mouse:
“This is an extraordinary and historic moment for us — one that will create significant long-term value for our company and our shareholders,” Chairman and Chief Executive Officer for The Walt Disney Company said in the statement. “Combining Disney’s and 21st Century Fox’s wealth of creative content and proven talent creates the preeminent global entertainment company, well positioned to lead in an incredibly dynamic and transformative era.”
Comcast tried to outbid Disney at one point last year, which forced the price to go up. Ultimately, Disney paid $71.3 billion for the majority of the company’s assets. So what did they buy? The deal includes 20th Century Fox, Fox Searchlight Pictures, Fox 2000 Pictures, Fox Family and Fox Animation; Fox’s television creative units, 20th Century Fox Television, FX Productions and Fox21; FX Networks; National Geographic Partners; Fox Networks Group International; Star India; and Fox’s stakes in Hulu, Tata Sky and Endemol Shine Group. Considering they already own Marvel, Lucasfilm, Pixar and ESPN, that’s incredible.
The acquisition comes at a time when the House of Mouse is going all-in with their own streaming service in Disney+. Set to compete with the likes of Netflix, Amazon Prime, and the dozens of other streaming apps available today, the platform has a reported 18 movies and 16 television shows in development exclusive to the service. Though due out later this year, they will reportedly unveil a first look of the service next month.
Source: The Walt Disney Company