My mother always used to tell me that the only constant thing in life is change. For years the “Fox” in Fox Searchlight Pictures and 20th Century Fox Studios stood for quality cinema and entertainment. Over the years the two have combined for some of the most critically and commercially successful films of all-time. SIDEWAYS, 12 YEARS A SLAVE, THE SHAPE OF WATER, DIE HARD, ALIEN, LOGAN, THE SOUND OF MUSIC – they are all great films bound up in the Fox name.
Last year in its ongoing effort to conquer the universe, Disney acquired both 20th Century Fox Studios and Fox Searchlight Pictures. The merger fundamentally changed both companies as they both came under the sway of the House of Mouse. A month ago Fox Searchlight emails dropped the “Fox” portion so the writing was already on the wall that changes were coming. Today Disney made it official as both 20th Century Fox Studios and Fox Searchlight Pictures are now merely 20th Century Studios and Searchlight Pictures.
Let’s all just take a deep breath and have a moment of silence. Better? No? Ah well moving on.
Legally Disney could still have allowed both Searchlight Pictures and 20th Century Studios to use the word “Fox.” However, the move was made apparently to avoid confusing consumers. The Murdochs still use the Fox name for Fox News for example. Disney wants to draw a clear line of demarcation between the two. While ostensibly I understand the reasoning, it still sucks. Thankfully the logos still employ the signature klieg lights and monolith structure. However, whether or not the distinct Alfred Newman theme used for decades by Fox will continue to be employed remains to be seen.
Even though this move was inevitable, it still nonetheless feels depressing. There’s so much historic iconic cinema tied up with the name Fox that it’s almost like a messy breakup. At some point you know you’re ex is going to move on. However, it doesn’t make it hurt any less when you see them with someone else. It’s like MARRIAGE STORY except with billionaires and Adam Driver isn’t punching walls.
So what are your guys’ thoughts? Does this news sadden you? Are you still upset about the Disney/Fox merger? What do you think this means for the future of film? Sound off in the comments below!