With the D23 still going on, I’m here to share some of the highlights from the D23 Expo Day 1. We got a lot of news about the kind of content to expect from the upcoming Disney+ streaming service.
The event, focusing on the Disney+ streaming service, during the D23 Expo Day 1, showcased the sweeping array of talent with in-person and video appearances from the stars of content covering Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars, and National Geographic. The attendees were treated to sneak peeks, trailer premieres, and exclusive news about the service and its upcoming projects.
Actress Yvette Nicole Brown, who stars in the Disney+ original film Lady and the Tramp, hosted the presentation, welcoming Kevin Mayer, chairman, Direct-to-Consumer & International, to the stage to kick off the show.
“With less than three months until launch, Disney+ will soon entertain and inspire audiences of all ages for generations to come, and we’re excited to preview some of the amazing original content being created for the service exclusively from our world-class brands today at the D23 Expo,” said Mayer. “Storytelling is the cornerstone of The Walt Disney Company and we’re thrilled to unveil a new slate of original shows from the Star Wars and Marvel cinematic universes, along with popular television franchises set to return with all-new series streaming only on Disney+.”
New Series Revealed at D23 Expo Day 1
As part of the presentation, some of the creative minds behind Disney+’s content slate including Sean Bailey, president, Walt Disney Studios Motion Picture Production; Kevin Feige, president, Marvel Studios; Kathleen Kennedy, president, Lucasfilm; and Gary Marsh, president and chief creative officer, Disney Channel Worldwide, gave fans a first look at the service’s upcoming originals and announced exciting new titles:
- Ewan McGregor made a surprise appearance to announce his return as Obi-Wan Kenobi in a new untitled series from Lucasfilm.
- Kevin Feige announced that Marvel Studios is developing three new live-action series including Ms. Marvel, Moon Knight, and She-Hulk.
- Hilary Duff surprised the audience when it was announced she will reprise the role she made famous in an all-new Lizzie McGuire series (featuring an older titular character) from Terri Minsky.
- Kermit the Frog is coming to streaming service with Miss Piggy and the gang, to star in an unscripted short-form series titled Muppets Now.
World Premiere Launch Content Previews at D23 Expo Day 1
The audience got the first public preview of Disney+’s original movies and shows set to stream when the service launches on November 12, 2019.
- A trailer for Lucasfilm’s The Mandalorian was shared. Executive producers Jon Favreau and Dave Filoni joined series stars Pedro Pascal, Gina Carano, Carl Weathers, and Giancarlo Esposito, along with Taika Waititi (who brings the droid IG-11 to life) to premiere the teaser trailer. Actress Ming-Na Wen will join the cast of the series, too. The show is “set after the fall of the Empire and before the emergence of the First Order, The Mandalorian follows the travails of a lone gunfighter in the outer reaches of the galaxy far from the authority of the New Republic.”
- High School Musical: The Musical: The Series will be a 10-episode scripted series.
- Host Yvette Nicole Brown joined fellow Lady and the Tramp cast members Rose (“Lady”) and Monty (“Tramp”)—the canine stars of the film—to premiere the first trailer.
- Noelle stars Anna Kendrick and Billy Eichner joined Sean Bailey to announce their film will premiere on Disney+ on November 12 before sharing a new trailer.
- Jeff Goldblum, who stars in and hosts the 12-episode series The World According to Jeff Goldblum from National Geographic, gave fans a peek inside the series including a new trailer.
- Executive Producer Kristen Bell shared a first look trailer for Encore!
- Tony Hale premiered the first short (“What is Money?”) in the Forky Asks A Question animated series.
Post-launch Originals at D23 Expo Day 1
Disney+ also talked about the titles set to premiere after the service launches.
- A scene from the Disney+ original film Togo, “an untold true story set in the winter of 1925 across the treacherous terrain of the Alaskan tundra,” was shown.
- Executive Producer and recurring guest star Gina Rodriguez joined Diary of a Female President lead Tess Romero to announce the series will premiere on Disney+ in January.
- Kathleen Kennedy announced that the highly anticipated new season of Star Wars: The Clone Wars will stream on Disney+ in February 2020.
- Sean Bailey shared a first look at the original film Timmy Failure: Mistakes Were Made. The film follows “the hilarious exploits of our quirky, deadpan hero, Timmy Failure, who, along with his 1,500-pound polar bear partner Total, operates Total Failure Inc., a Portland detective agency.”
- The stars of Stargirl, Grace VanderWaal and Graham Verchere, were welcomed on stage to help introduce the coming-of-age film based on the critically-acclaimed, New York Times’ best-selling young adult novel.
- Director Kari Skogland introduced Anthony Mackie and Sebastian Stan, the stars of Marvel Studios’ The Falcon and The Winter Soldier. Emily VanCamp came on stage and Feige revealed that she will reprise her role as Sharon Carter. Then, he introduced the crowd to Wyatt Russell who will play John Walker.
- Monsters At Work stars Ben Feldman and Aisha Tyler unveiled the latest design of their characters Tylor and Millie.
- Stars Paul Bettany and Elizabeth Olsen were on hand for their new series, Marvel Studios’ WandaVision. It will premiere on Disney+ in 2021.
- Kevin Feige welcomed the director, Kate Herron, and head writer, Michael Waldron, of Loki to the stage. It will debut in 2021.
- For Marvel Studios’ What If…? Hayley Atwell was on hand to greet the audience and talk about the animated series which will debut in 2021.
- Diego Luna and Alan Tudyk joined Kathleen Kennedy to introduce the audience to the second Lucasfilm live-action series for Disney+, which is now in development.
According to the press release, “for a monthly price of $6.99 or an annual rate of $69.99 in the U.S. (pricing varies outside U.S.), Disney+ offers viewers of all ages a compelling price-to-value proposition, with a consumer-friendly experience that’s easy-to-navigate with personalized recommendations, high-quality and commercial-free viewing, up to four concurrent streams, and unlimited downloads with no up-charges.”
The Disney+ app experience, available to consumers on November 12, 2019, will feature:
- Unlimited Downloads: Subscribers have access to unlimited downloads of shows and movies on the Disney+ app to watch offline later on up to 10 mobile or tablet devices, with no constraints on the number of times a title can be downloaded per year. Once downloaded, subscribers can watch on the go and without an internet connection. The number of titles stored at one time on a device is dependent upon the available storage space on a subscriber’s device.
- High-Quality Viewing: Subscribers will enjoy an ultra-high-definition viewing experience with up to 4K Ultra HD video playback in Dolby Vision ultra-vivid imaging, HDR10, and Dolby Atmos immersive audio on supported devices for available programming.
- Commercial-free Viewing: Subscribers can access unlimited viewing of Disney+ content without having to watch a single commercial.
- Profile Customizations: Subscribers can set up to seven different profiles and choose an avatar tailored to their favorite Disney, Pixar, Marvel or Star Wars characters, with over 200 avatars available.
- Concurrent Streaming: Disney+ allows subscribers to concurrently stream video content on up to four registered devices with no up-charges.
- Multiple Languages: At launch, Disney+ will offer support for English, Spanish, French and Dutch languages, including both user interface as well as audio support and/or subtitles for library content, with additional languages available for Disney+ Originals.
- Accessibility: The app offers support for closed captioning, descriptive audio, and navigation assistance to help subscribers with disabilities discover and enjoy their favorite stories.
Before I bring this article to a close, to celebrate D23, Toynk Toys is holding a sale with up to 50% off on select Disney-related merch.
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What did you think of the D23 Expo Day 1 announcements? Let us know.
Farid has a Double Masters in Psychology and Biotechnology as well as an M.Phil in Molecular Genetics. He is the author of numerous books including Missing in Somerville, and The Game Master of Somerville. He gives us insight into comics, books, TV shows, anime/manga, video games, and movies.
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