Disney+ Goes Live, Details When New Episodes of Original Series Will Debut

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Walt Disney chairman and CEO Bob Iger

Disney CEO Bob Iger says the streaming service launch marks a "historic moment for our company," which says it expects the offering to launch in most major global markets within its first two years.

The Walt Disney Co. early Tuesday said that its Disney+ streaming service has launched, as planned, in the U.S., Canada and The Netherlands with nearly 500 films and 7,500 TV episodes and revealed some new details.

The company, for example, said it expects the direct-to-consumer service to "launch in most major global markets within its first two years." 

For example, Disney+ is set to launch in Australia, New Zealand and Puerto Rico on Nov. 19. Disney also previously said that on March 31, 2020, Disney+ will launch in markets across Western Europe, including the U.K., France, Germany, Italy, Spain and "a number of other countries in the region."

Disney also made official Tuesday when the streaming service will mostly debut new episodes of original series, which at launch include the likes of The Mandalorian, the first-ever live-action Star Wars series; High School Musical: The Musical: The Series, the new scripted series set at the real-life East High featured in the High School Musical film franchise; and The World According to Jeff Goldblum, a docuseries from National Geographic.

"Beginning November 15, most new episodes of each series will premiere on Fridays at 12:01 a.m. PT," Disney said, without detailing what the timing would be in other cases. The firm had previously said that such shows as The Mandalorian would see new episodes released Fridays, but hadn't given a time. Considering the global expansion plans, some observers had wondered what time new content would debut on the service.

"The launch of Disney+ is a historic moment for our company that marks a new era of innovation and creativity,” said Disney chairman and CEO Bob Iger in a press release with the headline "Disney+ Lifts Off, Ushering in a New Era of Entertainment From The Walt Disney Company." "Disney+ provides an exceptional entertainment experience, showcasing our library of beloved movies, TV series and exclusive original content from Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars and National Geographic.”

Digital TV Research on Monday forecast that Disney+ would reach nearly 101.2 million subscribers by 2025.