Disney & Sony strike ‘landmark’ movie deal across streaming & linear


Disney has struck a vast multi-year deal with Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE) that will see the Mouse House gaining US streaming and linear rights to movie franchises such as Spider-Man.

Theatrical releases from 2022-26 are all covered by the arrangement, with Disney gaining access to IP once it has had an exclusive run on streaming rival Netflix following a separate deal unveiled earlier this month.


In effect, Sony has outlined its movie release strategy as such: films will first be released in cinemas, then made available via paid rentals and purchases, followed by Netflix for an exclusive 18-month period, and then finally to Disney’s streaming services such as Hulu and Disney+.

Shows will also be available via Disney’s linear entertainment networks, including ABC, Disney Channels, Freeform, FX and National Geographic.

For older properties, Disney will have access to the movies from as soon as June, a release from the companies announced. Movies including Jumanji and Hotel Transylvania are also included, while Disney will also be buoyed by gaining access to the Spider-Man franchise, which is owned by Sony but is a part of its gargantuan Marvel Cinematic Universe empire.

The agreement builds on the companies’ prior arrangement, which saw SPE movies licensed to FX in the post-pay 1 TV window.

For Sony’s part, the deals with Netflix and Disney strongly suggest that the PlayStation maker has no intention of following the likes of WarnerMedia, NBCUniversal and ViacomCBS in launching its own premium streaming service.

“This landmark multi-year, platform agnostic agreement guarantees the team at Disney Media and Entertainment Distribution a tremendous amount of flexibility and breadth of programming possibilities to leverage Sony’s rich slate of award-winning action and family films across our direct-to-consumer services and linear channels, said Chuck Saftler, head of business operations for ABC, Freeform, FX Networks, and acquisitions in Disney’s Networks division.

“This is a win for fans, who will benefit from the ability to access the very best content from two of Hollywood’s most prolific studios across a multitude of viewing platforms and experiences.”

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