Movies quietly disappear from Disney Plus

With the release of Disney Plus, Disney effectively abolished its legendary vault. For years, the vault was where Disney released films between the release waves, so some classic titles weren’t available for a long time. It was a smart way to spark interest in Disney’s DVD and Blu-Ray release schedule: whenever a popular movie came out of the vault, consumers, collectors, and resellers rushed to buy it, given their ability to get it would be limited. But with its new streaming service, Disney promised that all of its classics would be permanently available to subscribers. However, this does not apply to all films of the service. Some films won’t live on Disney Plus forever.

In fact, at the beginning of 2020, some Disney Plus users noticed that some films from the streaming library had disappeared. Dr. Dolittle, Pirates of the Caribbean: With Stranger Tides, Home Alone and Home Alone 2 as well as The Sandlot can no longer be streamed on Disney Plus. All of these titles disappeared without warning and Disney hasn’t said anything about them yet. Polygon has asked Disney to comment on the departures.

Many fans are surprised that films have stopped operating, especially since Disney has not released any press releases about the changes. While companies like HBO and Netflix publish monthly bulletins on everything that comes to and from their streaming services every month so viewers can plan their last minute binges, Disney has only focused on new arrivals and not on departures. However, the company has never promised that the various offers for Disney Plus will continue indefinitely.

Photo: Jesse Grant / Getty Images for Disney

In a statement to in November 2019, a Disney Plus spokesman said: “There won’t be a ‘rotating list’ of licensed films every month. [ .] With Disney Plus, beloved classics from the Disney vault are broadcast in a permanent home, including Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Pinocchio, Cinderella, The Jungle Book, The Little Mermaid and The Lion King – the entire signature collection with 13 films – everything available on the first day. “

For the unknown, the Signature Collection replaces the domestic media releases of the Platinum Edition and Diamond Edition of Disney classics such as “Beauty and the Beast”, “Bambi”, “Peter Pan” and “Sleeping Beauty”. This statement certainly makes it clear that the classic Disney Disney Plus will not be abandoned, but it says nothing about the hundreds of other films on the service.

And there are films that Disney Plus should already leave. According to a Bloomberg report, some of the service’s biggest titles, like Black Panther, will currently fall back on Netflix in 2026, where they were before Disney Plus launched. In addition, some enterprising Disney Plus users noticed that other films had hidden expiration dates that could indicate the end of certain contracts and license agreements, even though Disney owns all Disney Plus titles.

Black Panther will leave Disney Plus in 2026. Image: Marvel

Perhaps the most direct statement on the idea of ​​leaving titles comes from Disney boss Bob Iger himself. In March 2019, Iger said that Disney Plus “would house the entire Disney film library shortly after the launch”. But he made it clear that he was talking about “the films you’re talking about that were traditionally kept in the vault.” and basically released every few years. “

These comments leave a small gap to explain some of the missing films. In a later presentation in April, Disney also said that the launch of the catalog would take some time. During the Vanity Fair New Establishment Summit, Cnet Iger reported that Disney Plus subscribers could download their favorite films when it came to films that could potentially leave the platform due to the Netflix deal.

According to the Cnet report, Iger said: “Almost everything is there on the whole. And if you’re a subscriber, you can download it and transfer it to a device, and it will stay on the device as long as you subscribe. “In a later statement to The Verge, a Disney Plus representative made it clear that downloaded content would only remain on viewers’ devices as long as that content was available on Disney Plus, which means the company always had something in mind for the title Leave service.

This is not the first time that films have been silently removed from Disney Plus. Movies such as The Shaggy Dog and Garfield 2: A Tail of Two Kitties were also removed in 2019. But while those few titles have left the service and possibly more that have gone unnoticed, Disney has also slowly expanded the Disney Plus library. Currently, it seems that the complications of licensing agreements and streaming rights could mean that the selection of films and shows on Disney Plus in the US and other countries could remain in flux for the next few years.

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