by Kevin Lincoln
If, over the last few years, you’ve ever looked at the torrential downpour of original content coming from Netflix, which seems to be giving us new television series at the rate of about two per week, not to mention movies, documentaries, and comedy specials, and wondered exactly why the streaming giant seemed so motivated to produce reams and reams of its own stuff—well, here’s why.
On Tuesday, Disney announced that it would be pulling, at the very least, its Disney- and Pixar-branded work from Netflix at the conclusion of their licensing deal in 2019, at which point the Mouse House will be at some stage of launching their own subscription streaming service. (In addition, the company will create an ESPN-branded streaming service, marking a different, though not unrelated, front in the ongoing content wars that are reshaping the way entertainment is provided and consumed.) While Disney has yet to determine the fate of its Star Wars and Marvel properties, which are currently cornerstones of the increasingly limited Netflix licensed-movie library, the takeaway from the move isn’t the ultimate fate of any particular franchise—it’s that we’re entering the next phase of the streaming evolution, one that Netflix saw coming years ago.