Redbox is launching its on-demand service in an effort to keep up with the highly digitalized way of providing movie and TV content to consumers, but won't include any Disney films. Originally a physical disc hub where people go and rent out titles for a day, the company is bringing the same service online. And to ensure that their subscribers will have as many options as possible, they've partnered with several film studios such as Warner Bros., Paramount Pictures, Lionsgate, Sony Pictures Entertainment, 20th Century Fox and Universal Pictures- but not Disney.
Of course the reason behind Disney films not being part of the Redbox digital catalog is the fact that the Mouse House is gearing up for their own streaming service that will go live in 2019. It will include properties from their main film division Walt Disney Studios and subsidiaries like Marvel Studios, Lucasfilm, and Pixar.
In a recent report by Variety, Redbox's latest endeavor will work similarly to any other VOD service. People can access their favorite films, have the option to either rent or buy and then enjoy it in the comfort of their home. As of now, titles available on electronic sell-through include Dunkirk, The LEGO Ninjago Movie, and Flatliners. Meanwhile, rentals include Kingsman: The Golden Circle, Home Again, Detroit and All Saints. CEO Galen Smith explained, “This is really about expanding the options for our consumers. This allows us to go a lot broader and deeper than the selections we’re able to offer in the kiosk.”
As for their traditional way of doing business, Smith maintains, "physical [discs] will be around for a very, very long time.” Hence, they will still be offering that service for consumers who are price-sensitive and would rather spend their money on physical one-day rentals. The online service is just a "natural extension to what we’re already doing." He added, “It’s really, really important to understand that there’s segmentation in the market. Having one solution, which is digital only, is not right for every consumer."
With Disney's impending buyout of certain Fox assets, it will be interesting how it will impact Redbox's newest business venture. While we're not sure how the Mouse House will handle all the IPs that they will get from their $60-billion worth acquisition, we understand that a huge reason behind the investment is to stack up movies and TV shows for their upcoming streaming service. Should the deal finally push through (which could be any minute now) it could mean that Fox properties like Kingsman will be totally exclusive to Disney's streaming platform.