What you need to know
- Disney Plus has started losing access to popular movies less than 90 days after launch.
- This comes as a result of pre-existing licensing deals.
- The service will see a rotating slate of content as contracts and licensing deals mean many movies have an expiry date.
Disney Plus subscribers were surprised to find that movies like Home Alone, Home Alone 2, Dr. Dolittle, and a select few other titles vanished from the service unceremoniously. The idea behind Disney Plus, users probably believed, was that they pay a monthly subscription to access Disney content ranging from old classics to High School Musical, Star Wars, and even Marvel Content. It has had a pretty delightful launch so far and even waded into popular culture with the rise of Baby Yoda's cute and memorable face.
So, why is Disney taking the movies it created off its own service? As per Polygon's sources, these departures come as a result of legacy deals. That is to say, Disney had already promised that select other firms would have exclusive rights to these movies before it conceived of its own streaming service.
Even more recent movies on Disney Plus, like Black Panther, are even scheduled to be taken off the service in the latter half of the decade due to pre-existing contractual obligations.
This isn't a problem unique to Disney, as streaming services gain and lose access to movies all the time. It's just that with Disney Plus, users may have been led to believe that it was different. After all, it was a Disney service for watching Disney movies.
Unfortunately, even the House of Mouse isn't immune to lawyers and contracts. Given time, Disney Plus may grow to be a permanent home of Disney content, but for now, the prospect is just as fantastic as Aladdin.
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