On Wednesday 15th February 1984, Touchstone Films was started by then-Disney CEO Ron W. Miller as a label for their PG films with an expected 3 to 4 movies released under the label. Touchstone’s first film was Splash, a huge hit for grossing $68 million at the domestic box office was released that year. Incoming Disney CEO Michael Eisner and film chief Jeffrey Katzenberg considered renaming the label to Hollywood Pictures.
Touchstone Films was renamed Touchstone Pictures after the film Ruthless People in 1986. In April 1988, Touchstone become a unit of Walt Disney Pictures with newly appointed president Ricardo Mestres.
Following the success of the Disney-branded PG-13 rated Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl in 2003, and other films that in the 1980s and ’90s would have been assigned to the Touchstone (or Hollywood Pictures and Miramax Films) label, Disney has decided to weigh distribution of films more toward Disney-branded films and away from Touchstone Pictures, though not entirely disbanding them as it is continues to regularly employ the Touchstone label for R and most PG-13 rated fare.
In 2006, Disney limited Touchstone’s output in favour of Walt Disney Pictures titles due to an increase in film industry costs. Disney revived Touchstone in 2009 to serve as a distribution label for DreamWorks Studios‘ films.
By the end of the DreamWorks deal in August 2016, Disney will have distributed fourteen of DreamWorks’ original 30-picture agreement, with thirteen through Touchstone. Disney will retain the distribution rights for these DreamWorks films in perpetuity.
But what will happen to Touchstone Pictures? You see, on the CLG Wiki page as suggested that the critical and commercial failure of Strange Magic seems to be the likely end for the company, as they’ve only distributed the hit Bridge of Spies since then. As Disney’s deal with DreamWorks is expiring (since they signed an agreement with Universal Pictures), the future of Touchstone remains uncertain. It is possible that they may distribute another movie. Will Touchstone Pictures stay in or go home? If Disney wants to make another Touchstone movie, then it will stay. But if MGM struck the deal with Disney, then it will go home.