Disney briefly stopped sales of its on-demand content through iTunes in Japan after it failed to reach a deal with Apple. The company confirmed the news but followed up today with a statement on its website claiming that all services have been restored.
There’s not much explantation about the reason behind the removal of Disney content in Japan in the company’s statement, but it did confirm to Variety that “the interruption was due to difficulties negotiating the renewal of the old contract between Apple and Disney Japan. The new contract was signed on Wednesday and both rentals (VoD) and electronic sell-through returned to normal.”
Apple has close long had close ties with the company since Steve Jobs held a position as a director following the sale of Pixar to Disney. Apple has also named Disney CEO Bog Iger as a board of the company since 2011 and Disney content appeared as some of the first on-demand video content from a major studio at the launch of iTunes. The removal of content, if only for a brief period, is a reminder of just how important Apple’s content deals with studios are and just how quickly content can be removed if those relationships go south.
We’ve reached out to Apple for comment but didn’t hear back immediately at the time of publishing.