Disney Reportedly Considering A Merger Of Disney+ And Hulu

The streaming wars continue …

Collider reports the recent layoffs of executives at Hulu may be a sign of Disney’s intent to merge the well-established streaming service with Disney+. “The working theory is that there’s strength in numbers, and The Walt Disney Company would look much more appealing to Wall Street investors if it could boast of having 110 million subscribers on a single service, rather than 73.7 million on Disney+ and 36.6 million on Hulu,” Collider’s Jeff Snider writes. “It simply makes more sense to combine the two streaming services into one single juggernaut that appeals to both families and adults.”

Issues beyond executive redundancy may complicate the potential merger, however. As a large corporation with many media tiers, Disney produces less-than-family-friendly content and owns things like the Alien franchise thanks to its purchase of 20th Century Studios (formerly 20th Century Fox). Hulu, with its neutral name, always seemed like a good spot for this sort of content. Meanwhile, the service became a producer of interesting material and created a natural spot for FX to highlight its original series. And that’s before we even get to the service being a stealthy delivery vector for quality content from outside the Disney biosphere.

Those issues could be easily quashed by readily available technology, of course. Netflix, for example, offers easy-to-use age restriction tools. Disney already owns equivalent tech underneath the hood of Disney+, so it is viable to put films like Die Hard, Aliens, and Deadpool — to say nothing of dramas like The Thin Red LineThe French Connection, or Broadcast News — on the service. But will Disney want its name associated with R-rated content?

With WarnerMedia advancing its HBO Max strategy, Disney may have no choice but to bring all its subscribers under one banner and allow harsh language and nudity to be part of its singular streaming future. As Collider notes, the company has an Investor Day coming up on December 10th which may answer the lingering questions about their response to WarnerMedia’s hybrid release pattern and emphasis on its streaming component.

The streaming wars continue … Collider reports the recent layoffs of executives at Hulu may be a sign of Disney’sCOMICONRead More

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