Smaller Theaters Are Frustrated over Disney’s Movie ‘Vault’

Disney in 2018 claimed 40% of gross ticket sales in North America, expected to rise to 50%

Cue Darth Vader evil empire music.

When Walt Disney bought 21st Century Fox for $7.3 billion this past spring, that included the rights to hundreds of older 20th Century Fox movies. One theory about classic Fox movies going into the Vault is that the company wants consumers to subscribe to its new streaming service, Disney+, while another theory is that Disney simply wants the maximum number of eyeballs on its big franchises, like the Marvel movies or Star Wars.

Struggling Small Theaters Cry Foul Over Disney Throwing Classics In Movie ‘Vault’

Recently, I proposed shrinking the theatrical window from the current 90 days to 30 days. In that same post, I suggested that theaters should be showing more older movies than they are so that moviegoers could see movies on the big screen that they might have missed and/or want to see again.

It turns out that Disney, after the purchase of 20th Century Fox, is putting more movies in their “vault” thus leaving them unavailable to smaller theaters and even some larger theater chains.

Uh oh.

Maybe I need to rethink shrinking our collection of physical media movies? That is the one way to protect a movie collection from some crypt of Disney movie horror. Donald Duck and Mickey Mouse poised to protect Diehard from being seen on the big screen with fistfuls of wet spaghetti.

Ok, so I’m sort of joking. This Disney vault does concern me, somewhat. Especially if it’s anything like the Universal music vault which had a fire and master music recordings were forever lost.

When a fire blazed through part of the backlot of Universal Studios Hollywood a little more than 11 years ago, it took with it the music equivalent of a presidential library.

Hopefully the master film in Disney’s vault will be guarded with more regard than the music that in 2008 became cinders and ash.

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