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Netflix Can End the Hollywood Strike and Put the Final Nail In Disney’s Coffin All at Once

Netflix Can End Disney Plus
Netflix and Disney CEO Bob Iger / Credit: Netflix, Thomas Hawk, Flickr

It’s no secret that the Walt Disney Company is struggling right now. No matter how rosy Disney CEO Bob Iger wants to paint the picture, Disney is taking on water from all sides. Disney’s movies are hemorrhaging money. Its latest release, Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny (2023) will likely lose hundreds of millions of dollars.

Bob Iger in front of Cinderella's castle

Credit: Disney

Disney’s television division has been losing consumers and money for years as people have been cutting the cord from ESPN and ABC. And then there’s Disney Plus, which lost $4.1 billion last year and more than four million subscribers. 

Things have gotten so bad at Disney that reports recently came out that Iger is considering a fire sale of Disney’s television assets and possibly some of its streaming components, like Hulu. And these losses of both money and viewers have yet to take into account the Hollywood strikes that are currently ongoing.

And this brings us to Netflix. Before Disney Plus, Netflix and Disney had a strategic partnership that allowed Netflix the rights to stream Disney’s lineup of feature films, not including those in the Disney vault, and for those rights, Disney made millions.

Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny

Credit: Disney/Lucasfilm

But now, Netflix can end the writer’s strike and put Disney out of its misery once and for all.

Wedbush Securities analyst Michael Pachter told CNBC:

Netflix is likely to position itself to be seen as [friendly] to the actors. It’s kind of perverse that Netflix is in the AMPTP  [Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers, the group negotiating for studios]. The right solution is to do whatever is best for Netflix.

Netflix is negotiating as a member of the AMPTP, but its membership in that group has been fraught with issues as the “traditional” studios thumbed their noses at Netflix. But if Netflix were to break with the studios and negotiate with the Screen Actors Guild and the Writers Guild separately, it could break the logjam and get everyone back to work with a fair and reasonable contract.

disney ceo bob iger

Credit: CNBC

And Netflix has something else that no other streaming service has: money. While the other streamers lost money, Netflix made $6.5 billion last year. And while production has shut down at the Studios, Netflix has been putting that money in its pocket rather than paying for things like the news. It may not be enough to buy out Disney Plus, but it’s a start.

Adding Disney’s catalog of movies and shows, both current and future, as well as Hulu, would make Netflix the undisputed king of streaming content.

It’s the kind of “strategic partnership” Iger told CNBC he sought last week. It would also open Disney’s other properties like National Geographic, sports from ESPN, and Disney Channel shows to a Netflix subscriber base. It’s the kind of deal Apple TV Plus, or Amazon Prime can’t provide. This would also give Disney the capital to expand the Star Wars and Marvel universes with new original content.

So forget about the Disney bundle and instead look at what Netflix can do with Disney’s catalog.

 

About Rick

Rick is an avid Disney fan. He first went to Disney World in 1986 with his parents and has been hooked ever since. Rick is married to another Disney fan and is in the process of turning his two children into fans as well. When he is not creating new Disney adventures, he loves to watch the New York Yankees and hang out with his dog, Buster. In the fall, you will catch him cheering for his beloved NY Giants.

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