Disney Plus: Every big new movie, show and original to come
Marvel's Falcon and the Winter Soldier is the next Marvel original series teed up to premiere March 19. Here's all the Star Wars, Marvel and other originals slated for Disney Plus.
Joan E. SolsmanFormer Senior Reporter
Joan E. Solsman was CNET's senior media reporter, covering the intersection of entertainment and technology. She's reported from locations spanning from Disneyland to Serbian refugee camps, and she previously wrote for Dow Jones Newswires and The Wall Street Journal. She bikes to get almost everywhere and has been doored only once.
ExpertiseStreaming video, film, television and music; virtual, augmented and mixed reality; deep fakes and synthetic media; content moderation and misinformation onlineCredentials
Three Folio Eddie award wins: 2018 science & technology writing (Cartoon bunnies are hacking your brain), 2021 analysis (Deepfakes' election threat isn't what you'd think) and 2022 culture article (Apple's CODA Takes You Into an Inner World of Sign)
Disney Plus includes a huge Disney and Fox catalog of both new and classic movies and shows to stream. It has hundreds of movies and thousands of TV episodes from
, X-Men, The Simpsons,
eponymous studios and others. On top of that, the service has its own originals, like its original series from Star Wars and Marvel. And during the pandemic, Disney is skipping theaters for some of its movies to stream straight on Disney Plus or releasing some films to stream the same day they hit cinemas.
And while many movies originally intended for the big screen will be available on Disney Plus far earlier than they would normally, we still don't know when Disney Plus will be able to stream the company's biggest-budget movies, like Marvel's Black Widow, Shang Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings and Eternals.
Black Widow is first up, and it's still slated for theatrical release on May 7. Disney has yet to comment on when Marvel fans can expect the movie to be available to stream.
Daily News Newsletter
All the latest tech news delivered to your inbox. It's FREE!
Prior to the pandemic, you could generally count on Disney Plus to start streaming all of Disney's theatrical releases about six to 10 months after their big-screen debuts.
As Disney first started to cope with coronavirus cinema shutdowns, Disney Plus simply started streaming already-released movies months earlier than planned. Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker began streaming three months early in May, as did Frozen 2 in March 2020, and Pixar's Onward hit Disney Plus just weeks its theatrical premiere. Then Disney started switching movies to be Disney Plus originals, essentially skipping theaters entirely. The company's live-action film version of the musical Hamilton arrived on Disney Plus this way in July and Pixar'sSoul did too in December.
The biggest change in how Disney is releasing movies is its so-called Premiere Access model. Disney first tested this in September with Mulan, the 2020 mega-budget remake of Disney's 1998 animated classic, and it revived the model for the release of its animated feature Raya and the Last Dragon early in March. Premiere Access requires subscribers to pay an extra $30 fee to unlock access to these big new movies, typically becoming available the same day that the film debuts in theaters.
But it's unclear yet whether Disney Plus will release a film like Black Widow under the Premiere Access model at all -- and even if it does, it's unclear if that availability to stream would be the same day as the planned May 7 theatrical release date.
This article provides details about when to expect high-profile titles. It also summarizes the pipeline of originals coming to Disney Plus, with timing details if they're known.
Highlights with confirmed release dates:
New titles on Disney Plus typically are available to stream at 3 a.m. ET / midnight PT the day they're released.
June 11 - Loki premiere episode, the service's third original Marvel series.
June 25 - The Mysterious Benedict Society premiere, a series based on a bestselling book series about a group of orphans who must foil a globe-threatening plot
July 2 - Monsters at Work, an animated series based on Pixar's Monsters Inc. that picks up six months after the events of the original film.
Coming Marvel projects:
The Falcon and the Winter Soldier
Closely tied to events in the
Marvel Cinematic Universe
, Anthony Mackie's Sam Wilson character (and his Falcon alter-ego) returns as the new
, after elderly Steve Rogers handed off his shield in Endgame. Sebastian Stan's Bucky joins him to fight evil as a duo, and Daniel Bruhl will reprise his role of villain Zemo from Captain America: Civil War in the series. Even though the budget of the miniseries doesn't quite reach the stratospheric heights that MCU movies enjoy, Mackie said in June that the the filming experience for the show "feels exactly like" a big-screen Marvel movie. "So instead of a two-hour movie, a six or eight-hour movie," he said.
It's being written by Malcolm Spellman of Empire, according to Variety, and John Wick writer Derek Kolstad, according to The Wrap. Meanwhile, Kari Skoglan -- known for work on The Handmaid's Tale -- will direct all six of the series' episodes, according to Deadline.Timing: March 19.
Tom Hiddleston will reprise his role as Loki, saying the show will feature the version of Loki seen in 2012's first Avengers film. Loki appeared to be killed by Thanos at the beginning of Avengers: Infinity War, but Endgame's "time heist" plot showed Loki in 2012 snatching the tesseract/space stone and teleporting away. The Loki series will explain what happened to Hiddleston's character right after that, Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige has said. Hiddleston also said the series version of Loki reflects the mischievous version seen in The Avengers, not the reformed Loki seen in
: Ragnarok. Timing: June 11.
Marvel's What If…?
Marvel Studios' first animated series takes inspiration from the comic books of the same name. Each episode will explore a pivotal moment from the Marvel Cinematic Universe and turn it on its head, leading the audience into alternate realities. Many actors from the MCU will serve as voice talent. One episode will explore a Black Panther alternate reality with Jordan's villain Kilmonger. In the Thor corner, the Ragnarokteam of Chris Hemsworth, Tom Hiddleston, Taika Waititi and Jeff Goldblum are all getting back together -- plus Natalie Portman. Another episode will address a Peggy Carter alternate world with Hayley Atwell returning as Peggy and Dominic Cooper reprising young Howard Stark. Paul Rudd and Michael Douglas will voice their Ant-Man roles, and Jeremy Renner's Hawkeye and Samuel L. Jackson's Nick Fury will be showing up too.
A narrator voiced by Jeffrey Wright will serve as a through line across episodes. Wright's narrator is The Watcher, part of a celestial race that watches over events taking place in the MCU. The Watchers were briefly seen in Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol. 2 during Stan Lee's cameo. Timing: Mid-2021.
Picking up after the events of Avengers: Endgame, the Hawkeye series will see Jeremy Renner reprise his role as the archer and feature Hailee Steinfeld as Kate Bishop, who in the comics becomes the next Hawkeye. Exploring the character's time as Ronin, Renner said in a Comic-Con appearance, "I get to teach someone else how to be a superhero without superpowers." The cast also includes Vera Farmiga, Fra Fee and newcomer Alaqua Cox, playing Maya Lopez. The episodes are being directed by Rhys Thomas and the directing duo Bert and Bertie. Timing: Late 2021.
In the comics, Ms. Marvel, or Kamala Khan, is a teen protege of Captain Marvel's Carol Danvers and is Marvel's first Muslim character to headline her own comic book. The series on Disney Plus has cast Iman Vellani as the teen and is set to exist within the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Timing: 2021.
The series, about the cousin of Bruce Banner who gains super-human powers from a transfusion of Banner's blood, has been described as being comedic and casts Tatiana Maslany as She-Hulk/Jennifer Walters. Tim Roth will return as the Abomination, a character first introduced to the MCU in 2008's The Incredible Hulk, and Mark Ruffalo will reprise his role as Hulk. "And since Jennifer Walters is a lawyer who specializes specifically in superhero-oriented legal casesm, you never know what Marvel characters are going to pop up from episode to episode, the company said. Timing: Unknown.
This series -- about former mercenary and CIA agent Marc Spector, who has dissociative identity disorder and is imbued with powers from an Egyptian god -- is planned to be an action-adventure, Indiana Jones-type story. Directed by Egyptian writer/director Mohamed Diab, the show is supposed to incorporate Egyptian iconography and present Spector's multiple identities as distinct characters. Timing: Unknown.
The series, focused on shapeshifting Skrulls that have "infiltrated every level of life on Earth," will bring Samuel L. Jackson's Nick Fury back together with Ben Mendelsohn's Talos from Captain Marvel. Marvel head Kevin Feige has called Secret Invasion "arguably the biggest crossover comic event of the last 20 years" next to Captain America: Civil War. Timing: Unknown.
Dominique Thorne, known from films If Beale Street Could Talk and Judas and the Black Messiah, will play the genius inventor Riri Williams, who possess the most advanced suit of armor since Iron Man's duds. Timing: Unknown.
The series is a classic Marvel story about Tony Stark's worst fear coming true: his technology falling into the wrong hands. Don Cheadle will be returning as Jim Rhodes/War Machine. Timing: Unknown.
The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special
Marvel's first holiday special will have James Gunn writing and directing, and it will be shot during production of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3. Timing: Likely near Christmas 2022.
I Am Groot
Guardians of the Galaxy's Baby Groot will star in a series of shorts on Disney Plus that's supposed to feature "new and unusual characters." Timing: Unknown.
A series of animated short films, this project taps anime creators to put their spin on the Star Wars galaxy. This anthology collection will consist of 10 shorts from several of the leading Japanese anime studios. Timing: 2021.
A spinoff series of The Mandalorian. Ahsoka will bring Rosario Dawson back to play Ahsoka Tano, a fan-favorite character from the animated The Clone Wars and Star Wars Rebels shows. Dawson's Ahsoka, a Jedi wielding two white lightsabers, first appeared in The Mandalorian's second season. Timing: Christmas 2021.
Diego Luna will reprise his role of rebel spy Cassian Andor in this series set during the formative years of the Rebellion prior to the events of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. The spy thriller will explore tales filled with espionage and daring missions to restore hope to a galaxy in the grip of a ruthless Empire. Alan Tudyk will also reprise his role as K-2SO with Stephen Schiff (The Americans) as showrunner and executive producer. Timing: 2022.
Rangers of the New Republic
Another spinoff of The Mandalorian, Disney provided fewer details about Rangers. But Ahsoka and Rangers will be set within the timeline of The Mandalorian. Timing: Unknown.
An Obi-Wan seires will bring Ewan McGregor's Jedi face-to-face again with Hayden Christensen's Darth Vader, with events taking place 10 years after the events of Revenge of the Sith. Timing: Unknown.
A series based on the character of Lando Calrissian, this "event series" is being developed by Justin Simien, creator of the Dear White People. Timing: Unknown.
A mystery thriller series from Leslye Headland, the creator of Russian Doll on Netflix, Acolyte is supposed to take viewers to "a galaxy of shadowy secrets and emerging Dark Side powers in the final days of the High Republic era." Timing: Unknown.
Own the Room, a documentary about five students competing in the Global Student Entrepreneur Awards, confirmed for March 12.
A Turner and Hooch series updating the 1989 Tom Hanks movie, confirmed for July 16.
Chip 'N' Dale: Park Life, a reboot of the cartoon chipmunks, confirmed for July 23.
Sneakerella, a pop/hip-hop musical that imprints sneaker culture on the Cinderella fairy tale, confirmed for 2021.
Just Beyond, a horror/comedy anthology series based on the best-selling graphic novel series from children's writer R.L. Stine, confirmed for 2021.
Foodtastic, an unscripted competition in which contestants make Disney-inspired food art, confirmed for 2021.
Dug Days, a Pixar series spun off of its feature film Up, expected fall 2021.
Iwaju, a long-form animated science-fiction series set in Lagos, Nigeria, expected in 2022.
Baymax, Disney Animation Studios first series based on the film Big Hero 6, expected early 2022.
Zootopia Plus, a short-form series expected spring 2022.
A Pixar's Cars short-form series, expected fall 2022.
A Cheaper by the Dozen reboot with Blackish producer Kenya Barris attached about a multiracial, blended family of 12 balancing home life with managing their family business, expected in 2022.
A Three Men and a Baby reboot starring Zac Efron, aimed for 2022 release.
Tiana, a long-form, musical comedy series featuring the princess star of The Princess and the Frog, expected in 2023.
Moana, another long-form, musical comedy series exploring new stories with Moana, also expected in 2023.
Win or Lose, Pixar's first long-form series with 20-minute episodes, expected in fall 2023.
A new Diary of a Wimpy Kid film.
A Willow reboot series, set to start production in 2021.
Cruella, a live-action remake of 101 Dalmations starring Emma Stone.
A live-action Pinocchio movie starring Tom Hanks.
A sequel to Enchanted, with Amy Adams reprising her role as Giselle.
A revival of Sister Act with a third film starring Whoopi Goldberg.
Peter Pan and Wendy, a live-action reimagining of Peter Pan with Yara Shahidi as Tinker Bell and Jude Law as Captain Hook.