Disney Wants Rights To ‘Star Wars’ Films Back For Own Online Service

Disney have signed various deals with cable companies to show the Star Wars films, but with their own online service coming next year they want the rights back.

Walt Disney Co. is suffering from seller’s remorse.

The world’s largest entertainment company tried to buy back TV rights to “Star Wars’’ movies from AT&T Inc.’s Turner Broadcasting so that it can offer them on a new streaming video service, according to two people familiar with the matter.

Disney made a preliminary inquiry about regaining the rights, but met resistance, according to the people, who asked not to be identified because the talks were private. Turner has the rights to show the films on its cable networks, which include TNT and TBS, and online until 2024. The programmer would want financial considerations and programming to replace the lost films, one person said. The talks haven’t advanced further.

The “Star Wars’’ films are among the highest grossing in Hollywood, and content from the space saga figures to be a bedrock part of a new Disney streaming service that’s expected to debut next year. The company has said the service will include a catalog of movies and TV shows, as well as new, original programming such as a “Star Wars” TV series. It also wants the freedom to offer “Star Wars” movies on the service at will, one person said.

Disney sold certain rights to Turner in 2016, before it completed plans for the streaming service.

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James is an active member of the Star Wars collecting community, and is the Brand Director for Jedi News. James is also the host of the Star Wars Collectors Cast, and co-host of RADIO 1138 on the Jedi News Network.