The center of the Disney streaming strategy approach is here.
After an initial screening in the Netherlands, Disney + is officially launching in the United States and Canada today, with a lineup of original content that includes the first installment of the first live Star Wars series, "The Mandalorian" , "including a deep library of Disney, Pixar and Marvel movies and shows – not to mention the first 30 episodes of" The Simpsons. "
Disney + is available in. web, iOS, Android, Roku, various other smart TVs – and, as announced last week, Amazon Fire TV, all for a monthly price of $ 6.99.
This is not Disney's first streaming service. It was a big step in this direction at last year's launch of ESPN +, and also took control of Hulu's operations following its acquisition of Fox. (The company also offers Disney +, ESPN + and Hulu together in a package that it calls the Disney Bundle, at a monthly price of $ 12.99 – the same as a major Netflix subscription.) it owns the streaming service Hotstar in India. which it plans to bring to other developing countries in Asia. that the service will be the "ultimate and exclusive home" for all content from the Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars and National Geographic brands.
Of course, that doesn't mean that everything will be premiering at Disney + – the giant Marvel movies are still coming to theaters. But eventually they will head to the service, where they will specialize exclusively.
Mayer noted that this required a major change in Disney's approach, as it had to pass revenue from licensing content to streamers such as Netflix. The company also expects to spend $ 1 billion on original content in the first year of service, with the number increasing to $ 2.5 billion by 2024 fiscal year.
In addition to "The Mandalorian," the original shows announced for Disney + include an Obi- The Wan Kenobi series, as well as the Marvel title "WandaVision," "The Falcon and the Winter Soldier "and" Loki. "
Disney + President of Content and Marketing Ricky Strauss explained that Marvel shows would allow filmmakers to explore characters and post- "Avengers: Endgame" more deeply. illustration, which can then be reproduced back to what you see on the big screen.
"The Marvel Cinematic Universe is not just a theatrical play", Strauss adds.
There will also be films like "Lady and the Tramp," and unscripted series such as "The World According to Jeff Goldblum." Disney + Senior Vice President of Content Agnes Chu added no script. programs can supplement big movies – for example, one can watch the animated "Beauty and the Beast," then learn more about lyricist Howard Ashman in the original documentary "Howard." there is no R-content on the platform. So despite getting "Deadpool" as part of the deal with Fox, Disney will be streaming that movie elsewhere. even though fans usually start by watching a Marvel movie, the watched titles are generally "SHIELD Agents," "The sweet life of Zack and Cody" and "Mickey Mouse Clubhouse."
It can also take a while. before the entire library of different Disney brands made it to Disney +, as they had to be freed from company deals on Netflix and more. But at launch, it offers a number of classic Disney movies, as well as the first seven Star Wars films (available on 4K Dolby Vision for the first time) and numerous Marvel films including "Endgame."
In fact, Disney specifically moved the streaming release of "Endgame" to co-launch the Disney + – something Mayer described as a one-time decision that "does not indicate a continuous compression of the video window in home. "
He also emphasized that Disney will continue to make films for theatrical release – not only in Marvel blockbusters, but also in artier films of Fox Searchlight, which will continue to "find their way to theaters." At the same time, the company is also producing films specifically for Disney + and Hulu – Mayer said in cases where executives have decided that movies "will live better with our services SVOD. "
Straus is expected that in its first year, Disne y + will premiere 30 original series and 15 movies and specials, while also hosting a library of 7,500 TV episodes and more 500 movies. And Mayer said that by 2024, Disney expects the service to break even, with 60 to 90 million paying subscribers.
The event closed with a half-hour screening of clips from the first few episodes of "The Mandalorian," which tells the story of a mysterious hunter and takes place after the fall of Empire in "Return of the Jedi. "
I suppose the clips were carefully selected to avoid revealing any major plot details, but I'm happy to report that the show explored a seedier that was part of the Star Wars universe – imagine the scene of the Mos Eisley cantina, but starring Boba Fett and expanded into eight stages, with plenty of action and impact on the big budget.
And yes, legendary director Werner Herzog works for a delightful Star Wars baddie.