This concerns Australian TV, but stands as an interesting story for international readers as well as it highlights what Disney is up to in regards to its efforts to re-align its library as it seeks to establish dominance in streaming.
Yesterday saw Disney+ debut some key titles on its platform. They are all titles that you know. They are all titles that, until yesterday, were available elsewhere.
First we have season 33 of The Simpsons. Until yesterday, new episodes of The Simpsons had been debuting on broadcaster Seven in Australia. We hadn't yet seen the 33rd season of the show and now know the reason why: Disney has bought back the first window rights to the show. Only the first episode of season 33 is available now, but it suggests that the series will drop weekly episodes and will eventually catch up to the US (where 9 episodes of the season have already aired) as repeats air mid-season. Disney+ can't yet boast it has every episode of The Simpsons yet as season 32 is missing entirely from the library.
New episodes of Grey's Anatomy have also started streaming on Disney+, but I believe this happened with the previous season also.
Interestingly, some key older library titles are now Disney+ exclusive too. As of yesterday the streamer added Disney-owned shows Lost and Scrubs. Both had previously been on local streamer Stan.
I was mid-way through a Lost rewatch on Stan and yesterday evening went to press play only to find it vanished. With about 70+ hours of the show left to be watched by me, my viewing will now continue over on Disney+. Which is exactly what Disney needs - they want subscribers spending more time on platform. It also needs a rich and robust library of titles which is hampered if the rights to these shows are licensed to other platforms. By buying back the rights to these shows, or, at least, not re-licensing them when deals are up, it means that Disney+ can compete against Netflix with its own deep-library. Disney+ has the upper-hand with its library, however - there's a strong chance you have previously heard of these titles.
Yes, Disney would likely make more money in the short term through licensing content to third parties. But right now we are seeing a global land grab by the large international streaming giants - and right across the world it is the smaller, local streaming services and broadcasters who are increasingly left without these recognised, marquee titles.
- Trevor Noah is hosting the 2022 Grammy Awards. Read: Variety
- Independent film actor Ron Jeremy faces rape accusations on a new trial date May 2. Read: Rolling Stone
- Sony Pictures Television has purchased Doctor Who production company Bad Wolf. It has, in the past, also made TV shows for adults. Read: Deadline
- Disclaimer is a new Alfonso Cuarón series that has been picked up by Apple TV+. It will star Naomi Watts and Kevin Kline. Read: thefutoncritic
- AMC is going at its planned Anne Rice universe hard with a companion show to the upcoming Interview With a Vampire series. Anne Rice's Mayfair Witches has been greenlit. Read: thefutoncritic
- In 1926 Agatha Christie went missing for 11 days. That story is being 'reimagined' in a new Miramax TV series The Christie Affair. Read: Deadline
- Money Heist was a smash hit for Netflix - so it isn't a surprise to hear that a spin-off is in the works. Read: Variety
- The pricetag for the pilot of that dumped Game of Thrones prequel? $30 million. It's not money. It's HBO money. Read: Indiewire
- The BBC will screen a Ghosts Christmas special on Dec 23. Read: TV Wise
- TV doctor and low-rated Jeopardy! guest host Dr Oz is making a run at a US senate seat. This means the future of his daytime TV show is now up in the air. Read: TV Line
- Has Disney cancelled Turner & Hooch? Read: Twitter
- Lorne Michaels plans to stick with SNL until at least its 50th anniversary in 2025. Read: The Washington Post
The Marvellous Mrs Maisel returns to Amazon Prime Video Feb 18 (and I cannot wait!).
With Love debuts on Amazon Prime Video Dec 17. The cover art for this and Mrs Maisel indicates there's now an Amazon house style...
The Matrix Revolutions lands in cinemas and HBO Max on Dec 22.
The HBO Max - BBC co-production The Tourist is coming soon. FYI, it'll stream in Australia on Stan.
The Claus Family 2 debuts on Netflix Dec 7.
Bulgasal: Immortal Souls debuts on Netflix Dec 18.
What's next? Tomorrow.