New Warning Coming to Certain Netflix, Disney+ Content

in Disney, Entertainment

All of the different Disney+ titles surrounding the logo

Credit: Disney

It seems that Netflix, Disney+, and other streaming giants will potentially be adding a new warning to some of their iconic shows and movies.

Disney+ ad featuring Disney and Pixar characters
Credit: Disney+

 

In recent years, the once-unquestioned dominance of Netflix in the world of streaming content has been challenged by the likes of Max, Disney+, Amazon Prime, and Hulu. This time last year, it was reported that it had lost nearly a million subscribers, and shareholders were all but revolting against CEO Ted Sarandos.

Now, Netflix is showing astronomically higher numbers, including adding nearly six million new subscribers and increasing its free cash flow from approximately $13 million to a staggering $1.3 billion. The streaming platform home of The Witcher, Wednesday, Stranger Things, Squid Game, Avatar: The Last Airbender, and Black Mirror turned its fortunes around so abruptly with the recent addition of password crackdowns, much like we are about to see Disney+ do.

Netflix has been the most influential streaming platform, originating as a DVD service and now, housing some of the most popular series to ever be created. Netflix has even changed the film industry by making it so that a new movie can be of an award-winning status, but no longer needs a theatrical release, which has been customary for over 50 years.

A hand holding a phone with the Disney+ app open
Credit: Mika Baumeister via Unsplash

In competition with Netflix, we have Disney+.

When subscribers initially signed up for Disney+, they did so that they would have a library of everything Disney at their fingertips. No more would you have to purchase a DVD or find a way to watch your favorite Disney films and shows online, it was all available in one place. Then, to compete with the other big players in the streaming market like Netflix, Disney had to move past their regular content and create Disney+-specific and original content for viewers.

With this realization came a massive explosion of content that really helped transform Disney+ into one of the largest streaming services available. We have been able to see the Star Wars universe expand with three award-winning seasons of The Mandalorian, which has constantly broken records, and now, Ahsoka. In the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) growth for individual storylines and characters has been exponential, with so many series being created to dive deeper into different characters, which will only culminate as one massive storyline within the MCU timeline. The next big release on the Marvel side will be Loki, season two.

All of the different Disney+ titles surrounding the logo
Credit: Disney

Although the platform is trying to compete with the likes of Netflix, Amazon Prime, and more, it recently saw a major loss in subscribers.

Subscribers saw a considerable decline. Disney+ subscriptions fell from 157.8 million worldwide to 146.1 million, a loss of 11.7 million — more than doubling last quarter’s record decline, and it included a decrease of 300,000 in the U.S. and Canada where subscribers fell to 46 million. It’s just the second time Disney+ has taken a hit in North America; last quarter was the first.

Both Netflix and Disney+ are unified on one front, however — and that is price hikes and password crackdowns. Disney+ followed Netflix’s lead in cracking down on password sharing for people not living in the same home. Now, it seems they may have to unify once more, with a warning before a variety of their content.

We have seen Disney put out warnings before certain older films in the past.

Back when Disney+ first launched, we noticed that the streaming service took precautions as they placed a warning for subscribers to read regarding some of the controversial scenes before watching some of Disney’s older, classic content.

For reference, the scenes that were in question were those from Disney Animated Classics such as Disney’s Dumbo and Lady and the Tramp. In Disney’s Dumbo, during the scene where the black crows sing “When I see an Elephant Fly,” fans and audiences have agreed that it could be depicted and viewed as a negative representation of African Americans. The same goes for a scene from Disney’s Lady and the Tramp. The Siamese Cats sing the song “The Siamese Cat Song,” which many agree is very catchy, but as you listen closer to the lyrics, it makes sense as to why there has been controversy.

Not too long after the conversation started among fans regarding these scenes, Disney+ subscribers noticed that some of the Disney Classics such as Dumbo, The Aristocats, The Jungle Book, and the original Lady and the Tramp all contained a warning, which is placed at the end of the film’s descriptions. These warnings take place to caution Disney fans, who may agree with the “outdated cultural depictions,” that what they are about to watch contains racial portrayals that could be triggering.

Disney+ warning
Credit: Disney+

These initial warnings were only included at the end of the film’s descriptions, prior to clicking “watch now”. However, now we are noticing that the advisories display after you start the movie and prior to the films beginning. The movies that you may notice this new warning on include Dumbo, The Aristocats, The Jungle Book, the original Lady and the Tramp, Peter Pan, and Swiss Family Robinson.

The warning reads:

This program includes negative depictions and/or mistreatment of people or culture. These stereotypes were wrong then and wrong now. Rather than remove this content, we want to acknlowedge its harmful impact, learn from it and spark conversation to create a more inclusive future together. Disney is committed to creating stories with inspiration and aspirational themes that reflect the rich diversity of the human experience around the globe. To learn more about how stories have impacted society visit www.Disney.com/StoriesMatter.

This advisory is much more in-depth than the original warning that is just shown at the end of the film’s description due to certain scenes that were involved in the movie. The original warning read, “This program is presented as originally created. It may contain outdated cultural depictions.”

Now, Fox News has shared, “The charity organization Changing Faces wrote a letter to chief content officers at Netflix U.K., Amazon Prime Video, BBC IPlayer and Apple TV requesting that they help reduce the stigma of scars and other “visible differences” by including a disclaimer on its movies and TV shows. ”

netflix
Credit: Netflix

“Every year, Halloween becomes a particularly stressful time for some of those with visible differences,” the anti-discrimination organization wrote. “[V]illainous film characters with scars, marks, burns or conditions are often recreated as costumes, as well as becoming terms of abuse in everyday life.”

The organization is ok with the content being shown, but is requesting a “note in the film’s description and add a disclaimer on screen that such characters ‘reinforce negative stereotypes.”

The press campaign, called “I Am Not Your Villain,” lists Darth Vader in Star Wars and Scar in The Lion King as two notable examples of filmmakers using “physical disfigurement” as a visible representation of “evil.”

David Prowse as Darth Vader in 'Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back (1980)
Credit: Lucasfilm

According to the letter: “Harmful beliefs that scars and marks equate to evil can be reinforced through instant access to decades of archived content without explanation of the impact and undoubtedly contribute to othering and abuse of those with visible differences.”

Although the letter was written to Netflix, the examples that the campaign are showing are entirely Disney.

Changing Faces provided Fox News Digital with a short list of examples of potentially harmful media on major streaming platforms. On Netflix, the movie Halloween Kills was highlighted. On HBO Max, the charity group highlighted The Exorcist and Nightmare on Elm Street. On Prime, the group highlighted the 2019 film Joker, and The Omen on both Apple TV and Disney+, as well as The Lion King, and multiple Star Wars movies.

Do you think that a warning is needed before movie titles that depict scarred characters as the villain?

in Disney, Entertainment

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