ORLANDO, Fla. — Seeking to reassure investors after an uncertain year, the Walt Disney Company touted upcoming projects across its entertainment properties during an investor webcast Thursday.
Disney also announced plans to push forward with its streaming services, including more services for countries outside the United States, with "bold, transformative steps" to accelerate growth, according to Disney CEO Bob Chapek.
Chapek said the premier streaming service, Disney+, had 86.8 million subscribers as of December, and 137 million subscribers across all platforms.
"We're extremely proud of the success of all our streaming services, ESPN, Disney+ and Hulu," Chapek said.
Because of that growth, Disney will be raising the price of Disney+ and other global streaming services. In the U.S., Disney+ will go up to $7.99 a month starting in March.
Disney announced plans to eventually launch 15 Disney/Pixar features, 15 Disney/Pixar series, 10 Marvel Series and 10 Star Wars series directly onto Disney+ over the next few years.
All and all, Disney is planning to release more than 100 new titles a year over the next few years across all its properties, according to Disney Chairman Bob Iger.
Among the movies will be the upcoming feature Raya and the Last Dragon, coming to Disney+ Premiere Access and movie theaters simultaneously next March.
Hulu, meanwhile, will add original content from 20th Century Studios and Searchlight, and ESPN+ will become available directly within Hulu.
Disney Animation, Pixar Expanding Disney+ Originals
Disney Animation and Pixar are planning several new original series for Disney+, while also continuing plans for movies in theaters for the new year.
As mentioned before, Raya and the Last Dragon, Disney's 59th full-length animated feature, will air simultaneously in theaters and on Disney+ Premiere Access in March. The 60th animated feature will be called Encanto, about a magical family in Colombia and featuring songs by Lin-Manuel Miranda.
Disney will release four new animated series on the streaming platform, based on the films The Princess and the Frog, Big Hero 6, Zootopia and Moana.
Disney is also collaborating with African animation studio Kugali to create Iwaju, which will feature African animated stores.
Pixar is planning three new Disney+ series: Dug Days, featuring Carl and Dug from Up!, a Cars series, and Win or Lose.
Pixar is also planning three new theatrical releases, Luca, Turning Red, and Lightyear, described as a new twist on the origin story of Buzz Lightyear, for the next two years.
Disney Live Action Projects include Remakes, Sequels
Disney is planning to bring a slate of remakes and sequels to some well-known films from the 80s and 90s for Disney+.
The studio announced plans to bring a new Mighty Ducks film starring Emilio Estevez that picks up where the popular franchise left off.
Disney is also planning a new project based on the dog buddy comedy, Turner & Hooch, along with a modern take on the film Three Men and a Baby, starring Zach Efron, a new Sister Act film starring Whoopi Goldberg, and new projects based on Beauty and the Beast and Swiss Family Robinson.
Disney also confirmed plans for a sequel to Hocus Pocus, the popular Halloween film from the 90s. Disenchanted will be a sequel to the animated film Enchanted, also on Disney+.
Disney also is dipping back into its animation vault to make live action version of The Little Mermaid and Pinocchio, along with a hybrid animated project based on the TV classic Chip N Dale's Rescue Rangers.
LucasFilm Unveils New Titles for Disney+
Among the new shows coming to Disney+ over the next few years is around a dozen series from Lucasfilm, makers of Star Wars.
Lucasfilm Kathleen Kennedy announced two new spinoffs to the smash hit The Mandalorian, The Rangers of the New Republic and Ahsoka. The shows are being developed by Mandalorian showrunners Jon Favreau and Dave Filoni, and will culminate in a "climactic story event," coming in 2021.
Andor will be a spy thriller based around Rogue One character Cassian Andor, coming in 2022.
No release date was given for the long-awaited Obi-Wan Kenobi, a special series set 10 years after the events of Star Wars Episode III and starring Ewan McGregor in the title role. Kennedy did confirm, however, that Anakin Skywalker actor Hayden Christiansen would appear in the series as Skywalker's Sith ego, Darth Vader.
Kennedy also announced a new series being developed around the character Lando Calrissian, a series set around Star Wars's "High Republic era", and several animated series.
Kennedy also announced work on several other projects, including a new "Rogue Squadron" Star Wars feature directed by Patty Jenkins, coming in Christmas 2023., a fifth Indiana Jones film starring Harrison Ford, which begins production in spring 2021, and a new series on Disney+ around the film Willow, picking up where the movie left off.
Marvel Disney+ Shows Figure into Films
The Marvel Cinematic Universe will also expand over the next few years, with at least 10 new series coming to Disney+, along with several new movies. The new series are expected to tie into the theatrical movies coming out around the same time.
Marvel Films Chief Kevin Feige listed the following new series, coming over the next few years:
- Wandavision, January 2021
- The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, March 2021
- Loki, May 2021
- Animated series What If...?, summer 2021
- Ms. Marvel, late 2021
- She Hulk (starring actress Tatiana Maslany)
- Moon Knight
- Secret Invasion (starring Samuel L. Jackson)
- Armor Wars
- The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special, late 2022
Marvel is also planning to release the following films in theaters over the next few years:
- Black Widow, May 7, 2021
- Shang-Chi and the Legend of the 10 Rings, July 2021
- Eternals, November 2021
- A new Amazing Spider-man
- Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, 2022
- Thor Love and Thunder, May 2022
- Captain Marvel 2, November 2022
- Guardians of the Galaxy 3, 2023
- Antman and the Wasp Quantumania
- Fantastic Four
Feige also said Black Panther II will be released July 8, 2022. He addressed the death of Black Panther actor Chadwick Boseman, saying the character would not be recast, and director Ryan Coogler was writing a sequel that would honor Boseman's legacy.