Disney Is Cutting Ties With Netflix To Start Its Own Streaming Service

Disney joins Fox and the BBC in removing content from the streaming service.

Disney Is Cutting Ties With Netflix To Start Its Own Streaming Service
Walt Disney Animation Studios, Netflix

Disney is cutting ties with Netflix, and it's going to start its own streaming services to compete.

The company announced Tuesday it will acquire the BAMTech media company, which it'll use to create an ESPN live-streaming service and a Disney-branded video-on-demand service. 

The former will debut in early 2018, while the latter will launch in 2019 — the same year Disney plans on ending its partnership with Netflix.

Though not directly subscription-based, Disney already has branded on-demand services for Disney XDDisney Junior and Disney Channel. The company also has a service called Disney Movies Anywhere for those who purchase physical copies of films or connect with partnered content providers.

Another 5 Million Subscribers Just Joined Netflix

Another 5 Million Subscribers Just Joined Netflix

A recent poll suggested that account sharing might harm the company's bottom line.


The relationship between Disney and Netflix began in 2012, when the two companies shook hands on a high-profile deal. Starting with 2016 feature films, Netflix became the exclusive subscription service for Disney's new releases, including films from Pixar and Marvel Studios.

So far, Disney's only announced it will stop streaming new feature films on Netflix. The company hasn't said anything about its television series. It's also unclear how Disney's plans will affect Netflix's original Marvel series, but spokespeople from the streaming company say it has an ongoing deal with Marvel TV.

Disney's announcement is just the latest blow to Netflix's catalog.

This spring, Fox started pulling shows like "Bob's Burgers" and "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" from the streaming service.

And last year, the BBC also pulled "Doctor Who" from Netflix and Hulu, making Amazon Prime Video the exclusive U.S. streaming service to offer the British TV show. Like Disney's upcoming project, the BBC created its own streaming service called "BritBox" which features classic episodes of "Doctor Who."

Hours after Disney announced it would be splitting from Netflix, shares for the streaming service dropped by more than 4 percent.