Netflix is trying to keep Marvel and Star Wars movies on its service after its distribution deal with Disney ends in 2019. Netflix’s chief content officer Ted Sarandos told Reuters that the company was “still in active discussions” with Disney to hold on to the rights to stream certain franchises. Meanwhile, Disney CEO Bob Iger has said there’s no distribution plan in place currently for Lucasfilm or Marvel Studios, according to Reuters.
Earlier this week, Disney announced that it was going to end its distribution deal with Netflix — a deal that was made in 2012, but only took effect last year. The deal will end in 2019, when Disney intends to launch its own streaming service, featuring upcoming movies like Toy Story 4 and the Frozen sequel.
As the timeline stands right now, Netflix should have the rights to the first and second installments in the Star Wars trilogy (The Last Jedi is set to come out at the end of 2017) but not the third installment, which is set to come out in the winter of 2019.
Having the final installment of that trilogy would be a big get for Netflix, but if Netflix wants to eventually become a massive studio with diverse content that it has exclusive control over, its long-term plan will be more about creating original content than hosting already popular franchises.
Apparently Netflix expected this Disney splintering eventually. Sarandos told Reuters, “That's why we got into the originals business five years ago.”