Of all the great mysteries in the world, the only one that can match the mysteriousness of Apple’s streaming thing is the mysteriousness of Disney’s streaming thing. We know it’s stealing some movies from Netflix, we know it’ll have Justin Theroux kissing a dog, we know Disney wants some Muppets, we know it’ll have a new season of The Clone Wars, and we know it probably won’t have any of the fucking curse words or goddamn nudity that people love in R-rated movies. None of those are really concrete details about how the service will work, how much it will cost, or when it will launch, but now Disney is finally willing to share some new information about its plan.
As reported by Variety, Disney CEO Bob Iger told investors that he thinks the service will launch “at the end of 2019,” and he wants to “walk before we run” in terms of how much content they’ll be dumping onto it. That means it probably won’t launch with a complete library of Star Wars movies, Marvel movies, and selections from the vault where they keep Hercules, Treasure Planet, and The Great Mouse Detective. Thankfully, Iger notes that the price of a subscription will reflect the “lower volume” of content that Disney intends to offer, so it sounds like its avoiding the “charge as much as you possibly can” route that Warner Bros.’ DC Universe service is taking.
In terms of specific content, Iger confirms that no Star Wars movies released before Episode IX will be available, as other distributors—Netflix, specifically—already have the rights and were apparently unwilling to give them up. It’ll still have some Star Wars stuff, though, including the aforementioned Clone Wars revival and the post-Return Of The Jedi TV show that Jon Favreau is making. (Speaking of, Variety says that show might cost $100 million, so maybe Disney should rethink its pricing plan here).