Star Wars Streaming and Cable Rights Targeted By Disney

Star Wars Streaming and Cable Rights Targeted By Disney

With the amalgamation between itself and 21st Century Fox all but official, The Walt Disney Company is now shifting focus onto reclaiming another high profile intellectual property, Star Wars.

Disney will be launching their own streaming service next year. Turner paid about $275 million for the six Star Wars movies released between 1977 and 2005, plus the newer titles. This is because several years ago, Disney sold the TV rights to those movies to AT&T's Turner Broadcasting.

Disney is reportedly asking Turner Broadcasting to give back the rights to Star Wars films. It also wants the freedom to offer "Star Wars" movies on the service at will, one person said. Either way, though, it's pretty important for Disney to have these much-loved movies (at least, the original trilogy) available to readers when service launches, so let's hope they get this business with Turner sorted out quickly.

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Disney recently made an inquiry about regaining the TV rights for Star Wars, but it appears that Turner was not willing to relent without substantial compensation. Some are on Netflix and you can catch them on TBS and TNT.

This is a bit of an irony for Disney, because assuming they do not return to the negotiating table to reach a more palatable solution with Turner, this means they can not put on streaming the six movies-and specifically three classics-from which so much of their current product derives.

Disney already announced plans to end its deal with Netflix, though the streaming service may continue to stream Disney films made from 2015-2018 for "quite a long period of time thereafter", according to Disney CEO Bob Iger.