Marvel and Disney blew the roof off of 2019 San Diego Comic-Con last week.
Among their huge announcements were further details about the series ‘Loki,’ ‘The Falcon and the Winter Soldier’, ‘WandaVision’, ‘Hawkeye’ and ‘What If ...?’, which will be arriving to the upcoming streaming service Disney+ in 2020 and 2021.
What exactly is Disney+ and when will we get in the UAE? Read on to find out more.
DISNEY+: AN UPCOMING VIDEO-ON-DEMAND SERVICE
Disney+ is a video on demand streaming service that will launch in the US on November 12. It will cost $6.99 a month or $69.99 a year — that is approximately Dh25 a month or Dh257 a year.
The subscription-based video on demand platform is owned and operated by a division of the Walt Disney Company.
It will therefore centre on film and television content from Disney, which includes Marvel and Star Wars content.
Their over-the-top module — i.e. distributing content directly to viewers over the internet — will compete with other established streaming services in America such as Netflix, Amazon Prime Video and Hulu. In the UAE, they could also compete with services such as Starzplay and Wavo.
DISNEY+ IN THE UAE: WHAT IS THE RELEASE DATE?
Unfortunately for UAE fans who want to know whether we will get Disney+ at the same time as America (November 12), there is no official confirmation so far.
Local Disney representatives told Gulf News tabloid! on Monday morning that there is no official launch date for Disney+ in the UAE.
According to Screen Rant, Disney+ will go global by the end of 2021.
Hulu, a US-only subscription streaming service, is also majority-owned by the same division of the Walt Disney Company as Disney+. Since it was founded in 2007, Hulu has remained almost exclusively an American service and is not available anywhere else in the world, aside from Hulu Japan.
In the UAE, certain Hulu titles are available on the OSN streaming service Wavo.
In the past there have been significant delays with international expansions of other video on demand services.
Netflix, for instance, first announced it would introduce streaming content in the US in 2007, but only launched in the UAE in 2016.
Additionally, certain titles on streaming services such as Netflix and Amazon Prime Video are available in America but not locally.
Every country tends to have different video on demand catalogues and content — or different release dates — depending on licensing.
It remains to be seen whether Disney+ has international expansion plans and whether or not their content will be licensed for worldwide streaming or if geographical restrictions will come into play.
DISNEY+ RATINGS: WILL IT BE FAMILY-FRIENDLY?
As far as we know, Disney+ will exclude any R-rated programming. However, specific ratings for its announced shows have not been released.
DISNEY+ MARVEL SERIES: WHAT AIRS WHEN?
(Warning: spoilers for Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame)
1. The Falcon and the Winter Solider: Autumn 2020
The Falcon (Anthony Mackie) and the Winter Soldier (Sebastian Stan) return after the events of ‘Avengers: Endgame’. We last saw the Falcon pick up Captain America’s shield, though it’s unclear how that plotline will move forward. The cast will also see Daniel Bruhl return as villain Baron Zemo, while Emily VanCamp may return as Sharon Carter.
2. WandaVision: Spring 2021
Paul Bettany and Elizabeth Olsen will return as The Vision and Scarlet Witch/Wanda Maximoff in a series set after the events of ‘Avengers: Endgame’. While The Vision died in ‘Avengers: Infinity War’, Scarlet Witch was still around by the end of Phase 3 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
3. Loki: Spring 2021
Tom Hiddleston will be up to no good as the so-called ‘God of Mischief’ Loki, younger brother to Thor. We last saw the character get his hands on the tesseract in ‘Avengers: Endgame’, giving himself a new lifeline. It’s unclear where he will go next.
4. What If…: Summer 2021
‘What If…’ is the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s first animated series, and it will follow hypothetical situations that could arise in the Marvel universe. Familiar voices will return to voice the characters — such as Mark Ruffalo as Hulk, Josh Brolin as Thanos and Michael B. Jordan as Killmonger. ‘Westworld’ actor Jeffrey Wright will voice The Watcher and narrate the series.
5. Hawkeye: Fall 2021
Jeremy Renner returns as Hawkeye — aka Clint Baron — and will pass the baton onto Kate Bishop, who takes up the Hawkeye name in the comics. It has not been announced who will play Bishop in the series.