Disney+ to stagger release of original content as it prepares European launch

Streaming service will premiere new episodes every Friday at 8am.

Disney+: launching in UK on Tuesday
Disney+: launching in UK on Tuesday

Disney will release its flagship original series on a weekly basis on its Disney+ streaming service when it launches in western Europe next week.

At launch, Disney+ will premiere 26 original series and films exclusively on the platform, with episodes of those series released weekly every Friday at 8am.

Disney had not revealed until now whether it would stagger the releases or make all episodes available at once. Disney+ launched in the US in November and all episodes of the first series of its original show The Mandalorian have already been released.

However, Disney is making an exception for The Mandalorian and Star Wars: The Clone Wars in Europe by launching two episodes of The Mandalorian on 27 March and it will release two episodes of the latter each week.

Disney+ will launch in western Europe amid the height of the coronavirus crisis as people are forced to stay at home to avoid spreading the virus.

The increased demand for streaming services yesterday led Netflix to agree with European officials to temporarily reduce streaming quality in Europe – a move that will cut the data consumption of the platform by 25%. 

Disney revealed the launch dates for its streaming service back in January

The streaming service will launch in the UK as well as Austria, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Spain  and Switzerland on Tuesday. Additional western Europe markets, including Belgium, the Nordics and Portugal, will follow in the summer.

The UK launch will also involve an exclusive tie-up with mobile network O2, which will offer new and upgrading pay-monthly customers six months of free access to Disney+.

The service would usually cost £5.99 a month or £59.99 for an annual subscription.

Other content on Disney+ includes more than 600 episodes of The Simpsons; Disney, Pixar, Marvel and Star Wars movies; and documentaries from National Geographic.

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