The talks between Disney and Fox, which were first reported last month, are finally complete, resulting in Disney acquiring 20th Century Fox and their other entertainment and sports assets for a hefty $52.4 billion.
Disney made the deal for many reasons, but most important might have been the fact that content now reigns king, and with their own streaming service set to launch over the next few years, Disney needed more content. They’ll now have 20th Century Fox movies and TV shows to augment their existing content with; that’s the existing back catalogue and future projects, too.
That means that, yes, Disney now owns the X-Men and Fantastic Four, allowing them to bring those two entities into the MCU.
The whole deal will take around 18 months to be regulated and approved by the government, so don’t expect any of those characters making a surprise appearance in Avengers: Infinity War or anything, but it’s likely that eventually we’ll see those characters hanging out with Iron Man and co.
Disney now owns all the Star Wars movies too, since they previously lacked the rights to A New Hope, which now allows them to release special editions or 4K versions of all the films as a package if they so wish.
Questions now remain as to what this means for entities like Fox Searchlight and how Disney will manage Fox’s movie output. For example, they’ve recently had plenty of success with R-Rated superhero movies like Deadpool and Logan, but with Disney being more family-orientated, do those more challenging, subversive ideas now fall by the wayside?
One would hope not, but we’ll have to wait and see. This is a certainly a great deal for Disney and Fox, but there’s now one less competing studio in Hollywood, and less competition usually means a lower quality product, which is naturally bad for consumers.