The Disney and Fox merger is expected to close next week
On November 6, 2017 the story broke that The Walt Disney Company was in early talks to purchase parts of 21st Century Fox, the parent company of the 20th Century Fox movie studio as well as other TV and media assets. Now it looks like that deal is nearly complete, as Disney CEO Bob Iger said (via The Hollywood Reporter) that he expects “the acquisition to become effective at 12:02 a.m. Eastern Time on March 20.”
While there have certainly been discussions at Disney and sub-studios like Lucasfilm and Marvel about what will happen once they inherit Fox’s intellectual property, we shouldn’t expect a bonanza of announcements right off the bat. Marvel Studios has already stated that they will make no announcements about future films -with eight more titles slated through 2022- until after Avengers: Endgame is released in April.
Last June The Walt Disney Company signed an amended acquisition agreement with 21st Century Fox for $71.3 Billion ($38 per share in cash and stock). Disney will acquire 21st Century Fox immediately following the spin-off of the businesses comprising “New Fox” as previously announced. This move came after Comcast made an aggressive $65 billion all-cash offer for the 21st Century Fox assets, forcing Disney to increase its initial $52.4 billion purchase for the Fox acquisition.
For movie fans, as of now this means that presumed plans to reintegrate characters like Fantastic Four and X-Men (including Deadpool) into Disney’s Marvel Cinematic Universe, as well as the total acquisition of Fox’s distribution rights to the original 1977 Star Wars for Lucasfilm. Disney will also now control the rights to such current Fox cinematic franchises as Avatar, Planet of the Apes, Alien, Predator, Die Hard, Kingsman, Ice Age and Night at the Museum. On the TV side some titles they will control include The Simpsons, Family Guy, The X-Files, Legion, American Horror Story, The Orville, NBC’s This Is Us and ABC’s Modern Family. In 2018, Disney’s Buena Vista held a dominant 26% of the movie market share, while 20th Century Fox held 9.1%.
Keep reading ComingSoon.net for future details on Disney’s acquisition of the 21st Century Fox assets!