Disney is going all out on its forthcoming streaming platform, with plans for a live action STAR WARS series, a new Marvel series, a MONSTERS, INC series and a HIGH SCHOOL MUSICAL series all in development.
Bob Iger made the announcement on a call with investors following the release of the company’s fourth quarter financials.
There’s no indication yet what Star Wars or Marvel stories might get told in each of these new series, but fans have long speculated about both.
On the Star Wars side, a 2005 TV show idea from George Lucas himself has been bandied about by fans for years. Star Wars: Underworld would be set between the events of Revenge of the Sith and A New Hope (kinda like Rogue One) and would follow a young bounty hunter and his mentor and their adventures across the galaxy.
Though resurrecting that idea seems unlikely, ABC president Channing Dungey stoked the idea of a Star Wars TV series as recently as January of this year, when she confirmed the network – which is, of course, owned by Disney – was having ongoing discussions with Lucasfilm about potentially bringing a live-action Star Wars to broadcast.
There’s no indication whether this show would have been one that ended up on ABC had Disney not decided to launch its own streaming platform, or if there’s room for two Star Wars shows on the horizaon. Who are we kidding? Of course there is room for two shows – and many, many more.
Just look at the Marvel superhero universe model. That Marvel is developing a new original series on yet another platform is not a surprise or an area of concern at all, wih Marvel shows already peacefully co-existing on ABC, Freeform, Netflix and Hulu.
As for what Marvel superhero story could be the one to launch Disney’s own streaming platform, there are a couple of options already out in the ether. First is New Warriors, the half-hour comedy that is already in production and which recently left Freeform, its planned home. While some cautioned it was a longshot for the streaming platform since the reason it left Freeform was to ensure a 2018 premiere date and the streaming service does not launch until 2019.
The other possibility is a secret project John Ridley had been developing – and then rewriting- for ABC since 2015. However, in July, Dungey seemed much more cagey of the prospect of that show being on the network, saying, “I’m actually not sure. That’s a question for Marvel.”
Linda Ge | TV Editor