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Disney Should Contribute More To Canadian Culture As Per Heritage Minister

Heritage Minister Pablo Rodriguez says Disney should contribute more to Canadian culture.

Streaming services such as Netflix, Disney, and Amazon Prime, according to Heritage Minister Pablo Rodriguez, are "the new great players" that should contribute more to Canadian culture.

Netflix, Disney

Netflix, Inc., founded in 1997, is an American supplier of on-demand Internet streaming movies available to users.

Disney plus and netflix logo
Disney plus and netflix logo

Between 2011 and 2018, Netflix's "Watch Instantly" service held first-run rights to Disney films. Prior to 2019, Netflix also offers back-catalog TV shows distributed by Disney-ABC Domestic Television.

Currently, Netflix has exclusive pay-TV partnerships with the majority of mini-major film studios and a few large film studios.

Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures (including Walt Disney Pictures, Walt Disney Animation Studios, Touchstone Pictures, Disneynature, Pixar, Lucasfilm, and Marvel Studios) releases before 2019 are featured on Watch Instantly.

Disney–ABC Television Group is another studio that licenses material to Netflix.

Netflix and The Walt Disney Company announced an exclusive multi-year subscription television service partnership with Netflix for the first run of Walt Disney Studios animated and live-action films on December 4, 2012.

In September 2016, Netflix will release new content from Disney, Walt Disney Animation Studios, Pixar, Marvel Studios, and Disneynature.

However, legendary classics like Dumbo, Pocahontas, and Alice in Wonderland were immediately available on Netflix. In 2013, new direct-to-video releases were made available.

The agreement followed Disney's November 2012 announcement that it would close down its web movie service Disney Movies Online on December 31, 2012.

Heritage Minister's Proposition

Rodriguez said amending the broadcasting law to accommodate commercial content on social media and streaming platforms is long overdue.

Heritage Minister Pablo Rodriguez discussing about Canadian film productions
Heritage Minister Pablo Rodriguez discussing about Canadian film productions

He said people rented movies from Blockbuster and listened to Walkmans when the legislation was last changed in 1991.

The new regulation would apply to both streaming services and traditional Canadian broadcasters, who must currently transmit Canadian content.

Rodriguez wants to see more Canadian Netflix shows like Schitt's Creek and Anne with an E. He said he's "flexible" about how streaming businesses contribute to Canadian culture, adding they may put money in a fund.

Amazon, Netflix, and Disney invest in Canadian content, which is excellent. He thinks Canada has incredible talent and streaming providers should invest more in Canadian film, TV, and music.

He added that their system must also accommodate new Canadian artists. Indigenous, handicapped, racist, and LGBTQ Canadians "deserve a voice," he argues.

Rodriguez said during the bill's second reading that he "addressed" critics' fears that it would restrict social media viewing and creation.

This version of the bill failed to pass before the election because of fears it would hurt social media influencers and YouTube uploaders.

Rodriguez said the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission, which will regulate internet streaming companies and traditional broadcasters, won't control Canadians' social media use.

The Conservatives, on the other hand, expressed worry that the rule would apply to those who use and upload content on social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter. John Nater, a Tory heritage critic told that this 'just believe us' attitude does not inspire confidence.

Nater also said that Canadians want to know what's Canadian. He indicated the Conservatives would reject the bill on second reading but alter it if a House committee reviewed it.

Rodriguez said the proposal will boost Canada's creative sectors, especially French-Canadian music and cinema. After hearing complaints about restricting social media items like "cat videos," he stated the government "fixed the problem."

Rodriguez said he spoke with several influencers and online artists who are "wonderful people" and "earning a fortune – but this measure is not about them."

Only commercial content, like a YouTube song available on Spotify, would be affected. He said two-thirds of Canadians listen to music on YouTube, and a Weeknd song on YouTube and Spotify should be treated equally.

Rodriguez said the new law will generate more money for Canada's creative industries via streaming platforms, but also give Netflix and Disney input on how they contribute.

Netflix's music business model is different from Disney's and Spotify's, and that they must acknowledge their different business methods and offer value to the mix. Them setting goals, and conversations and negotiations will determine how to get them.

People Also Ask

Is Disney Plus Free With Amazon Prime Canada?

The short answer is "no," regrettably.

Is Disney Plus Allowed In Canada?

On November 12, 2019, Disney Plus was released in Canada, the United States, and the Netherlands.

What Disney Movies Are On Netflix Canada?

  • The Princess and the Frog
  • Incredibles 2
  • Saving Mr.
  • Ralph Breaks the Internet
  • Christopher Robin
  • Walt Disney Animation Studios Short Film Collection
  • Bolt
  • Mary Poppins Returns


Some online sites may pledge to make a percentage of their content Canadian, while others could contribute to a fund that would then be distributed to Canadian artists and producers. The minister expressed confidence that the bill will be supported by members of the Bloc Québécois and the New Democratic Party.

About The Authors

Daisy-Mae Schmitt

Daisy-Mae Schmitt - Daisy-Mae is obsessed with inventing new ways to create awesome content that's absurdly useful and successful, with over ten years of editorial and inbound marketing experience. She also serves as a reporter, strategist, interviewer, mentor, and therapist for in-house contributors and clients.

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