Everything you need to know about Disney’s new streaming service, Disney+
The arrival of Disney+ will kick off a new era in streaming when it crashes into a field of established stand-alone services such as Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime Video and HBO Now. Also entering this ever-expanding arena are brand-new services from Apple ( Apple TV+) and WarnerMedia ( HBO Max).
With family-friendly films and TV shows from Disney, Marvel, Lucasfilm (“Star Wars”), Pixar and National Geographic slated for its expansive library, Disney+ is expected to be a formidable player in the streaming wars.
Here’s everything we know about Walt Disney Co.’s direct-to-consumer streaming service so far.
What is Disney+?
Disney+ is Disney’s ad-free streaming service, launching Nov. 12 in the U.S. as well as Canada and the Netherlands. (The service will launch in Australia and New Zealand on Nov. 19.)
It will be the streaming home for movies and TV shows from Disney, Marvel, “Star Wars,” Pixar, National Geographic and more. The library will include animated classics, recent releases and original content.
How much is it?
Disney+ will cost $6.99 a month or $69.99 a year. Disney also will offer the service in a bundle along with Hulu (with ad support) and ESPN+ for $12.99 a month. (International pricing will differ.)
How can you watch it?
The Disney+ app will be available on a variety of smart TVs and connected TV devices, such as Apple TV, Google Chromecast and Roku. It also will be accessible via iOS devices, Android phones and gaming consoles such as XBox One and PlayStation 4. Notably absent from the list of devices that will support Disney+ at launch are Amazon Fire and Fire TVs.
What can you watch on it?
Disney has said the service will host more than 7,500 television episodes, 400 older films and 100 recent theatrical releases in its first year. Also during this first year, Disney+ is slated to release more than 25 original series and 10 original films, documentaries and specials.
What original TV series have been announced?
– “The Falcon and The Winter Soldier” (fall 2020): An MCU series, set after the events of “Avengers: Endgame,” following Anthony Mackie as Sam Wilson (aka Falcon) and Sebastian Stan as Bucky Barnes (aka Winter Soldier). They are two of Steve Rogers’ (aka Captain America) closest friends.
– “WandaVision” (spring 2021): A show about Wanda Maximoff (aka Scarlet Witch), played by Elizabeth Olsen, and Vision, played by Paul Bettany. The show also will introduce MCU fans to the grown-up Monica Rambeau, played by Teyonah Parris. A much younger Monica made her MCU debut in 2019’s “Captain Marvel .”
– “Loki” (spring 2021): The god of mischief will be the focus of this series, with Tom Hiddleston reprising his role as the fan-favorite villain Loki.
– “Hawkeye” (fall 2021): The show that will introduce Kate Bishop (whom comic book fans also know as Hawkeye) to the MCU. Jeremy Renner’s Clint Barton also will be there.
"Star Wars" (live action)
– “The Mandalorian” (available at launch): Set somewhere in the outer reaches of the galaxy, some time between the fall of the Empire and the rise of the First Order – meaning between the events of “Return of the Jedi” and “The Force Awakens” – “The Mandalorian” is a space western starring “Game of Thrones” alum Pedro Pascal as the titular blaster-slinger. Written and executive produced by Jon Favreau, the show is the first live-action “Star Wars” spinoff series. The cast also includes Gina Carano, Carl Weathers, Giancarlo Esposito, Emily Swallow, Omid Abtahi, Werner Herzog and Nick Nolte. Dave Filoni, known for his work in “Star Wars” animation, is the director of the first episode.
– Untitled Cassian Andor Series (to debut during year two): Diego Luna will be back as Cassian Andor in this spy thriller set in the early years of the Rebellion, before the events of “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.” Alan Tudyk also returns as K-2SO. Stephen Schiff (“The Americans”) will serve as showrunner and executive producer.
Other scripted live-action series:
– “High School Musical: The Musical: The Series” (available at launch): A 10-episode scripted series (in the mockumentary style) following a group of students preparing to put on East High’s first-ever production of “High School Musical.”
– “Diary of a Female President” (to debut during year one): A series following a 12-year-old Cuban American girl navigating the highs and lows of middle school as she journeys to become the future president of the United States. Gina Rodriguez (“Jane the Virgin”) and Emily Gipson (“I Can and I Will”) will serve as executive producers with Ilana Pen(TILDE)a (“Crazy Ex-Girlfriend”).
– “Love, Simon” (release TBA): Set in the world of the 2018 film “Love, Simon,” the half-hour series will follow Victor, a new student at Creekwood High School who has to adjust to living in a new city while dealing with family issues and struggling with his sexual orientation. He reaches out to Simon for help.
– “Forky Asks a Question” (available at launch): “Toy Story 4” breakout Forky has important questions about how the world works. All of these questions and more will be explored in a series of 10 shorts.
– “SparkShorts” (available at launch): A series of experimental shorts from Pixar’s program designed to discover new talent and explore new storytelling techniques from artists across the studio.
– “Monsters at Work” (2020): Set six months after the events of the original “Monsters, Inc.,” this new series will follow Tylor Tuskmon (voiced by Ben Feldman), who works as a young mechanic on the Monsters Inc. facilities team. His dream is to work his way up to the Laugh Floor, to make kids laugh along with his idols Mike and Sully. The series cast includes “Monsters, Inc.” vets Billy Crystal, John Goodman, John Ratzenberger, Bob Peterson and Jennifer Tilly, as well as newcomers Kelly Marie Tran, Henry Winkler, Lucas Neff, Alanna Ubach and Stephen Stanton.
– “Marvel’s What If…?” (summer 2021): The MCU’s first animated series will introduce the Watcher, voiced by Jeffrey Wright, and feature stories set in alternate realities spun from pivotal moments in the MCU. The voice cast will include established MCU actors reprising their characters.
– “Chip ‘n’ Dale” (to debut during year one): Classic chipmunk characters Chip and Dale are in for a modern makeover in a new comedy series that will see them living in a small park in a busy city. The series, comprised of 39 seven-minute episodes, will be produced by the award-winning French production studio Xilam Animation.
– “Star Wars: The Clone Wars” (to debut during year one): Anakin Skywalker, Obi-Wan Kenobi, Padme Amidala, Ahsoka Tano and Captain Rex will be back in 12 brand-new episodes of the Emmy Award-winning animated series, set between the events of the prequel films “Attack of the Clones” and “Revenge of the Sith.” (The series originally launched on Cartoon Network in 2008, with the unaired sixth season debuting on Netflix in 2014).
– “Lamp Life” (to debut during year one): What was Bo Peep up to between “Toy Story 2” and “Toy Story 4”? This all-new animated short film explains.
– “Short Circuit” (to debut during year one): A series of shorts from Walt Disney Animation’s experimental program created to encourage new approaches to visual style and story and to find new voices.
– “Encore!” (available at launch): Executive producer Kristen Bell is organizing a high school reunion like no other: Former castmates of a high school musical are challenged to re-create their original performance.
– “Marvel’s Hero Project” (available at launch): A series spotlighting the real-life heroics of kids making positive changes in their communities.
– Untitled Walt Disney Imagineering Documentary Series (available at launch): A documentary series about the 65-year-plus history of Walt Disney Imagineering (the creatives behind the Disney theme parks), spotlighting the people, the craft and the business itself.
– “The World According to Jeff Goldblum” (available at launch): A series in which Jeff Goldblum explains everyday stuff. Need we say more?
– “Be Our Chef” (to debut during year one): A Disney-inspired cooking competition for the chance to create a dish for Disney Parks. Each episode will see two families taking part in challenges involving their family traditions and Disney themes. The finalists will be tasked with creating a dish that represents their family in a Disney way.
– “Dolphin Reef” (to debut during year one): Natalie Portman narrates Disneynature’s “Dolphin Reef,” which will follow a young bottlenose dolphin named Echo. Echo is at a dolphin crossroads, unable to decide if he’s ready to grow up and take on new responsibilities, or if he’ll remain silly and just have fun with all the other sea creatures that keep him distracted.
– “Into the Unknown: Making ‘Frozen 2’” (to debut during year one): A documentary series giving a behind-the-scenes look at the creation of “Frozen 2.”
– “Magic of Animal Kingdom” (to debut during year one): A documentary series following the animal-care experts, veterinarians and biologists at work at Disney’s Animal Kingdom and Epcot’s SeaBase aquarium.
– “Marvel’s 616” (to debut during year one): An anthology documentary series examining the historical, cultural and societal context of Marvel’s stories, characters and creators.
– “Prop Culture” (to debut during year one): An anthology series that examine films through the props and costumes that made them unique. The movies discussed in the first eight episodes include “Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl,” “Mary Poppins,” “The Muppet Movie,” “Tron” and “Who Framed Roger Rabbit.”
– “(Re)Connect” (to debut during year one): Each episode will see a family unplug from their lives in order to face whatever is driving a wedge among them and overcome it with the help of a specialized expert.
– “Rogue Trip” (to debut during year one): Journalist Bob Woodruff and his 27-year-old son, Mack, will travel the world to visit places that are often misunderstood or overlooked by tourists.
– “Shop Class” (working title; to debut during year one): A competition series in which teams of students will be tasked with designing, building and testing new gadgets. A panel of experts will whittle down the field until one team is named Shop Class Champs.
– “Earthkeepers” (working title; to debut during year two): A documentary series following conservationists and the animals they have devoted their careers to, as well as everything that goes into their efforts to protect the planet’s most endangered species.
– “Ink & Paint” (to debut during year two): A documentary series about the unsung women who worked to create some of Disney’s greatest animated films. It’s based on the book of the same name.
What about original movies?
– “Lady and the Tramp” (available at launch): A live-action retelling of the 1955 animated classic about the romantic adventures of a prim and proper house dog named Lady and a scrappy stray named Tramp. The cast includes Tessa Thompson (voice of Lady), Justin Theroux (voice of Tramp), Kiersey Clemons (Darling), Thomas Mann (Jim Dear), Janelle Monae (voice of Peg), Yvette Nicole Brown (Aunt Sarah), Sam Elliott (voice of Trusty) and more.
– “Noelle” (available at launch): Anna Kendrick stars as Noelle, the carefree younger sister of Nick Kringle, played by Bill Hader, who is the first in line to be Santa Claus. When the stress of being Santa becomes overwhelming, Nick disappears just weeks before Christmas. It’s up to Noelle to find Nick and save the holiday.
– “The Phineas and Ferb Movie” (working title; to debut during year one): Phineas, Ferb, Candace and the whole blended Flynn family are back for a new movie based on the fan-favorite animated series that followed the siblings’ summer vacation antics. This time, Phineas and Ferb head to space to order to rescue Candace, who has found utopia on a faraway planet after being abducted by aliens.
– “Secret Society of Second-Born Royals” (to debut during year one): The movie centers on Sam, a princess with no real interest in the royal way of life. The second in line to the throne of Illyria, Sam one day discovers she has superpowers and that a secret society of second-born royals has long been tasked with keeping peace in the kingdom. She’s in for some adventures as she joins a top-secret training program to prepare for saving the world.
– “Stargirl” (to debut during year one): A coming-of-age movie based on the YA novel of the same name, “Stargirl” follows 16-year-old Leo Borlock, who is happy to fly under the radar until a new girl shows up at his high school. Stargirl is quirky and different and not at all like any of the other kids at Leo’s school, and she changes everyone’s perceptions about themselves and each other.
– “Timmy Failure” (to debut during year one): Directed by Academy Award winner Tom McCarthy, “Timmy Failure” follows a young boy who believes he’s the best detective in town. Timmy runs Total Failure Inc., along with his partner, a 1,500-pound polar bear. The movie is based on the book “Timmy Failure: Mistakes Were Made” from the “Timmy Failure” illustrated series. McCarthy and the book’s author, Stephan Pastis, co-wrote the screenplay.
– “Togo” (to debut during year one): Based on a true story, “Togo” will follow Leonhard Seppala (Willem Dafoe) and his lead sled dog Togo, known for their role in the Nome Serum Run to deliver medicine to children during the 1925 outbreak of diphtheria in Alaska. (The real-life Balto – the inspiration behind the 1995 non-Disney animated movie “Balto” – also was a part of this run, which involved traveling more than 700 miles in harsh conditions.)
– “Flora & Ulysses” (release TBA): Based on the children’s book “Flora & Ulysses: The Illuminated Adventures,” the movie will follow a 10-year-old named Flora. A comic book fan and a self-proclaimed cynic, Flora’s life is forever changed when she saves a squirrel that ends up developing superpowers.
What else will be included in the Disney+ catalog?
Disney+ will be the exclusive streaming home for all of Disney’s theatrical releases beginning in 2019, starting with “Captain Marvel,” which will be available at launch. Other recent releases headed to the platform include “Dumbo,” “Avengers: Endgame,” “Aladdin,” “Toy Story 4” and “The Lion King,” as well as the upcoming “Maleficent: Mistress of Evil,” “Frozen 2” and “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker.”
Below are titles that Disney has confirmed will be available at launch (including 30 seasons of “The Simpsons”).
“Boy Meets World”
“Dog Whisperer With Cesar Milan”
“Dr. K’s Exotic Animals”
“Dr. Oakley Yukon Vet”
“Drain the Ocean”
“DuckTales” (2016, Season 1)
“ Howie Mandel’s Animals Doing Things”
“Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy”
“Marvel’s Ultimate Spider-Man”
“Mickey and the Roadster Racers” (Season 1-2)
“Mickey Mouse Clubhouse”
“Mickey Mouse Shorts”
“One Strange Rock”
“Rocky Mountain Animal Rescue”
“Star Wars Rebels”
“Star Wars: The Clone Wars”
“That’s So Raven”
“The Incredible Dr. Pol”
“Unlikely Animal Friends”
A still from “The Simpsons”
Even “The Simpsons” are headed to Disney+.(Fox)
“A Bug’s Life”
“A Goofy Movie”
“An Extremely Goofy Movie”
“Big Hero 6”
“Born in China”
“Fun and Fancy Free”
“High School Musical”
“Honey, I Shrunk the Kids”
“Lady and the Tramp”
“Lilo & Stitch”
“Mickey, Donald, Goofy: The Three Musketeers”
“Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmas”
“Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl”
“Pixar Short Films Collection Vol. 1”
“Remember the Titans”
“Rogue One: A Star Wars Story”
“Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs”
“Star Wars: Episode I: The Phantom Menace”
“Star Wars: Episode II: Attack of the Clones”
“Star Wars: Episode III: Revenge of the Sith”
“Star Wars: Episode IV: A New Hope”
“Star Wars: Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back”
“Star Wars: Episode VI: Return of the Jedi”
“Star Wars: Episode VII: The Force Awakens”
“Star Wars: The Clone Wars”
“The Good Dinosaur”
“The Little Mermaid”
“The Parent Trap” (1961)
“The Prince & the Pauper” (1990)
“The Princess Diaries”
“The Sorcerer’s Apprentice” (short)
“The Sword in the Stone”
“The Three Caballeros”
“Thor: The Dark World”