Disney's worldwide popularity has grown with the studio's ownership of powerhouses like Lucasfilm and Marvel. The studio recently became the first to cross the $7 billion worldwide box office mark in a single year. Unsurprisingly, audiences' interest in Disney isn't limited to just their most recent releases. There are plenty of fans who still hold the studio's classic works close to their hearts. And in a recent deal, the rights to some of Disney's most popular older releases have found their way to one streaming service in particular.
Earlier this year, the studio struck a huge deal with Netflix to be the exclusive streaming service for all of the studio's new titles released from 2016 on. And while the deal seemed like a boon to subscribers, it meant that certain classic Disney movies would eventually be taken down. Netflix subscribers can, however, still view some of the studio's classic hits like Lilo & Stitch, The Emperor's New Groove, Fantasia, and Tarzan. But those titles will soon disappear to one the service's biggest competitors.
According to Variety, Hulu has acquired the exclusive rights to stream 56 classic Disney movies in a new deal with the studio. The streaming service has already begun adding titles to its library, and there will plenty more to come in the next few months. Some of the biggest titles on the way include Mulan, Pocahontas, and The Nightmare Before Christmas.
Along with the titles listed above, Hulu will also add other hits like The Princess and the Frog, Step Up, Con Air, and the aforementioned Lilo & Stitch. And although the exact cost was not disclosed, the report did reveal that the deal is the service's biggest ever for movies. Unsurprisingly, this isn't the first time Hulu has paid top-dollar for popular titles. Back in August 2015, the service invested $160 million for the exclusive video rights to Seinfeld.
After this new deal, the competition between Hulu and Netflix will definitely be intense. While Hulu will have some of Disney's older hits, Netflix is already home to many recent releases like Zootopia, The Jungle Book, and Captain America: Civil War. Each service will surely have its fair share of faithful subscribers, especially after even more titles are added. But no matter what, it's still exciting that so many classic Disney movies are becoming so easily available. In Hulu's case, it remains to be seen exactly what Disney titles they've acquired, but it's probably fair to say there will be plenty of good choices.