Last month, the streaming service Disney+ added R-rated superhero movies “Deadpool,” “Deadpool 2” and “Logan” to its lineup.
The Parents Television Council responded by saying that Disney had broken a promise.
“Three years ago, the Walt Disney Company made a promise to families: No R-rated movies on Disney+, they said. It’s a family-focused platform, they said. We have Hulu for our edgier adult fare, they said. It turns out they were lying to us,” said PTC President Tim Winter.
“After decades of corporate brilliance establishing itself as the world’s most trusted brand for families, today’s C-level suite at Disney has decided to flush it all down the toilet.”
PTC is likely referring to a Twitter report from August 2019, a few months prior to the launch of Disney+. Writer Eric Vespe said a Disney representative told him at the D23 convention that “Disney+ will all be PG-13 or softer.”
I asked about R-rated content, if any of Fox’s more adult fare will make it on to Disney+ and he said that Disney+ will all be PG-13 or softer. I wonder if this will be their weakness that other streaming services can exploit.— Eric Vespe (@EricVespe) August 24, 2019
“While Disney+ points subscribers to its parental controls, the mere presence of R-rated and TV-MA rated content violates the trust and sensibilities of families,” Winter said. “What took decades to build is now taking mere months to erase.
“One day in the no-too-distant future, business schools will point back to this abrupt corporate U-turn as they analyze what happened to the once-great Walt Disney Company. And in the meantime, families will continue to be woefully underserved by Hollywood.”
TV-MA shows on Disney+
In March, Disney+ added several shows that carry the TV-MA rating. The Marvel series “Daredevil,” “Jessica Jones,” “Luke Cage,” “Iron Fist,” “The Defenders” and “The Punisher,” which all debuted on Netflix, were added to the streaming service.
At the time, Winter told Newsweek that Disney “is repudiating the very reason why millions (perhaps even billions) of parents around the world have come to rely on the Walt Disney brand.”
Does Disney+ have parental controls?
At the same time that TV-MA shows were added, Disney+ rolled out parental controls for its platform. Users were given the option to add content ratings restrictions on different profiles and to protect profiles with a PIN.