Streaming services have become huge business for everybody, so the news that Disney was going to come out with its own service in 2019 wasn’t too surprising. Now, we’ve got some new details about exactly what the company is planning. In addition to providing access to existing Disney product, the service will also get original movies and TV series exclusive to the streaming service. Disney CEO Bob Iger, revealed the plan is for about five original movies per year. In a recent interview, he said…
We’ll make original films for the platform, probably about five a year. Those will be made specifically for the platform. And we’ll do the same for television. We’ll make original TV series; we’ll take Disney Channel series and move them eventually to this platform. And we’ll also fill it in with shorts and other library product. So it’ll have thousands of hours of Disney, Marvel, Pixar and Star Wars-branded product on it.
While access to popular TV shows and movies was the original driver that brought people to streaming services like Netflix and Hulu, now, a large part of what keeps them there is original content. In many cases, the same movies that you can watch on Amazon Prime are also available on Netflix or Hulu, but if you want to watch The Handmaid’s Tale and Daredevil, you’ll need two different streaming services. We know that Disney’s decision to have its own streaming service means the end of seeing that content on other services, but even if you have a vast collection of Disney films on DVD, you’ll still need the service if you want to see everything Disney has to offer since some product will be exclusive to this platform.
Of course, the idea that Disney will be making more movies, one has to wonder what sorts of original content that could be. We could very well see a new Marvel TV series or a smaller Star Wars project appear there. Big brands like that would certainly help draw people who might be on the fence about adding another streaming service to the package.
Don’t expect to see Disney bring out the big guns for the service, though. Bob Iger also confirmed to Vanity Fair that Disney’s big tentpole releases will go to theaters first, and won’t appear on the streaming service for a significant period of time.
If you want to watch it right away when it comes out you’ll have to go to the movie theater. We’re not creating what’s called a premium movie or video window for that. We’re in the business of making about 10 tentpole films, we say premium films for a premium experience. We’re gonna stay in that business. We’re not going to move those to smaller devices.
Disney has one of the largest film catalogs with some of the biggest brands in the history of pop culture. Its service will almost certainly be a force to be reckoned with the day it arrives. Unfortunately, we have to wait for 2019 for that day to come.