A Disney takeover of Fox’s entertainment assets would create a Hollywood powerhouse. Fox’s recent hits have included the Planet of the Apes and X-Men film franchises, while Disney controls Pixar and the Star Wars series.

    But cable subscriptions, an area where both Fox and Disney have made fortunes, are slipping as more people rely on the internet to deliver their entertainment.

    Disney is thought to be unlikely to seek to buy Fox’s sports programming assets for fear of running foul of antitrust laws given its ownership of the ESPN sports network, and would also not buy Fox News or Fox’s local broadcasting affiliates.

    It might face competition for Fox’s entertainment assets from Comcast, the US cable group, and Verizon, the telecoms group, both of which have expressed an interest.

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