Two days ago Digital Bits editor Bill Hunt, whom I know slightly and is not generally regarded as an excitable, hysterical, “fly off the handle” type, reported that Disney has “made an internal decision to suspend the 4K Ultra HD release of live action catalog titles from both their own vaults and those of their newly acquired 20th Century Fox label.”
Boiled down and according to his understanding, this means that “beyond new release theatrical titles, animated fare from Disney and Pixar, or Star Wars and Marvel-related projects, there were no plans at the studio going forward to release titles on physical 4K Ultra HD”, and that “future releases will be 4K digital only.”
Journo pally comment: “If Disney wants to make it hard to see The Computer Wore Tennis Shoes, that’s one thing. But taking the entire Fox library down with them, especially coupled with Disney’s apparent unwillingness to license revival screenings (not that anybody would be able to tell right now), is something else.”
HE to Connected Industry Guy: “What have you heard about this ‘Disney jettisoning 4K physical media’ thing? Not just Disney but the entire Fox library. Sounds like a big deal.”
Connected Industry Guy to HE: “I wouldn’t be too concerned about this. I’d bet they’ve yet to fully evaluate the situation. They have a superb exec in Schawn Belston, who is quite able to lead them to proper potential 4K IP in the Fox library. There’s very little in the Disney library that’s actually 4K fodder. Most of the Fox IP that would be interesting is large format, so low in numbers. The situation needs to jell a bit.”
I subsequently reached out to Belston…crickets.