There was a lot of concern amongst TV fans in the United Kingdom and parts of Europe that Disney+ wouldn't include one of the most popular animated series of all time, The Simpsons. Disney now owns The Simpsons, thanks to its purchase of 20th Century Fox, but the streaming rights to the series in Europe are pretty complicated. Fortunately, Disney confirmed this week that The Simpsons will indeed be available on Disney+ in the UK when it launches later this month.
The Disney+ UK Twitter account tweeted on Tuesday night that "over 600 episodes" of The Simpsons would be available on the service when it goes live on March 24th. Seeing as the first 30 seasons of The Simpsons consist of 670 total episodes, it seems as though most of, if not the entire series will streaming.
Disney owns The Simpsons outright, which made it easy for the company to add all of the episodes to the Disney+ streaming roster in the United States, but those rights are a little more complicated overseas. 21st Century Fox and Disney sold the rights to Sky, the UK satellite provider, to Comcast back in 2018. Sky had previously locked down the rights to stream Fox content, including The Simpsons.
Over 600 episodes of The Simpsons + Disney + Pixar + Marvel + Star Wars + Nat Geo = 🤯 D’oh not miss out! pic.twitter.com/IqRM1BXU6C— Disney+ UK (@DisneyPlusUK) March 4, 2020
Sky and Disney struck a deal this week that will allow The Simpsons to stream on Disney+ as well as Sky, making the series a shared exclusive.
"The Simpsons will remain on Sky co-exclusive for new [seasons] and including the back catalogue," a Sky representative told The Verge.
The new deal between Sky and Disney gives The Simpsons the chance to stream on both services and will also bring Disney+ to Sky Q boxes.
“We’ve built a strong partnership with Disney over three decades and we’re pleased that our customers in the UK and Ireland can continue to enjoy their world-class content – all in one place on Sky Q,” said Jeremy Darroch, Sky CEO.
Disney+ will launch in the UK on March 24th.
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