Disney-Fox takeover: US media giant will own The Simpsons, X-Men and Avatar after multi billion dollar deal

The potential ramifications go far beyond getting the X-Men to meet the Avengers

Clarisse Loughrey@clarisselou
Thursday 14 December 2017 15:12

The media landscape is about to change forever.

Walt Disney has agreed to the purchase of large swathes of assets from 21st Century Fox for an eye-watering $52.4bn (£39bn), including film and television studios. The deal includes namely: film production businesses Twentieth Century Fox, Fox Searchlight, and Fox 2000, alongside TV units Twentieth Century Fox Television, FX Productions, and Fox 21.

Speculation as to Disney's motivations will be rife, but many have seen it as a competitive move to try and combat the growing influence of Amazon and Netflix, with plans to launch its own streaming service in 2019.

Indeed, part of the deal includes Fox's stake in Hulu, a video streaming service set up by Fox, Disney, and Comcast, giving it majority control of an already key competitor to Netflix itself.

It's an important thing to note when considering the amount of franchises and valuable property Disney is about to acquire and how we'll be watching those properties in the future. We've listed the major ones down below.


The acquisition has the potential to heavily shape the future of big-scale, blockbuster cinema. Obviously, the potential of the X-Men meeting the Avengers is a major talking point for some, but what happens elsewhere? Fox was making moves to re-ignite its Predator franchise, while Ridley Scott keen to continue with Alien. What happens to them? Here are its major franchises:

X-Men - including Deadpool and Fantastic Four
​Planet of the Apes

Die Hard
Ice Age
Independence Day

In terms of Fox's archive, the most important aspect will be the acquisition of Star Wars: A New Hope, which was fully owned by Fox and so wasn't included in Disney's purchase of Lucasfilm. Re-releases will almost certainly be on the cards. Beyond that, Disney inherits an impressive archive of film that will surely fuel its planned streaming service. Here's just a small selection:

Moulin Rouge!
All About Eve
Cast Away
The Sound of Music
Gone Girl
Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid
The Rocky Horror Picture Show
Home Alone 
The Princess Bride
The Martian

Add to that Fox Searchlight, which has grown since its establishment in the mid-90s into a formidable player during awards season. It's behind the likes of:

28 Days Later
Napoleon Dynamite
Little Miss Sunshine
Slumdog Millionaire 
(500) Days of Summer
Black Swan
12 Years a Slave
The Grand Budapest Hotel 
Battle of the Sexes
The Shape of Water
The Billboards Outside Epping, Missouri


Within the combination of Twentieth Century Fox Television, FX Productions, and Fox21, there's a massive amount of television now sweeping under Disney's rug. Here's what could be affected:

The X-Files
Modern Family 
American Horror Story
This Is Us
The Orville
The Americans
American Crime Story
The Simpsons
Family Guy
American Dad
Bob's Burgers

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