Marvel Series to Stream via Netflix Through New Disney Deal

Disney and Netflix have inked a deal for multiple original live-action series based on Marvel characters to be streamed exclusively on Netflix, which has committed to streaming at least four 13-episode series and a miniseries. Marvel will develop series based on characters Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Iron Fist and Luke Cage, leading to a miniseries event for “The Defenders.” The programming is planned to begin on the streaming service starting in 2015.

“The multiyear deal extends Marvel’s push into live-action TV, following the September debut of ‘Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.’ on Disney’s ABC network,” notes Bloomberg.

“This deal is unparalleled in its scope and size, and reinforces our commitment to deliver Marvel’s brand, content and characters across all platforms of storytelling,” said Alan Fine, president of Marvel Entertainment.

“The Netflix deal represents an effort by Disney to replicate Marvel’s successful ‘Avengers’ movie strategy on smaller screens,” reports The New York Times. “The company first made stand-alone films for characters like Iron Man and Captain America and then combined the characters into one megamovie. The second Avengers film, ‘Age of Ultron,’ is expected to arrive in theaters in summer 2015.”

Netflix has been developing original content and pursuing more exclusive programming to fend off competition from Amazon, Hulu and others.

“Last year, Netflix outbid Liberty Media’s Starz for the exclusive right to show Disney movies, including films from Marvel Studios, about eight months after they hit theaters,” notes The Wall Street Journal. “The deal established Netflix as a legitimate competitor to premium cable TV channels by offering additional popular content for its Internet video streaming service. Starting in 2016, Netflix customers will be able to see recently released Disney movies in their Watch Instantly queue.”

Disney ended its fiscal year with solid growth in fourth-quarter profit and a stock price that has risen 35 percent over the last 12 months.