If Disney's recent Investors presentation taught us anything by making dozens of new-project announcements for several of its platforms, it's that Disney execs exude zero worries about budgets and other financial details. If they want enough Star Wars TV shows to fill up all the hours in a week, so be it! It does seem like they know what they're doing, though, as a new report notes that the company's streaming service Disney+ is expected to earn more than $4 billion in revenue over the next two years. That's billion with a "b," as in Baby Yo-dollars.
With Disney+ very close to finally unleashing its Marvel Cinematic Universe on streaming viewers – with Elizabeth Olsen and Paul Bettany's WandaVision as the mind-boggling first entry – the platform is apparently also on the cusp of a major financial influx. According to Insider's Emarketer, Disney+'s rapid rise in subscriber numbers isn't going to plateau anytime soon, and its experts forecast that Disney's year-old streamer will have brought in somewhere around $4.23 billion by the end of 2022, which is astounding for any company so young. Granted, it helps to already have the exceedingly deep pockets that Disney has, but still. (Remember how deep the pockets were that funded Quibi?)
At this point, Disney+ is projected to hit $1.94 billion in revenue just for 2020, one of the most polarizing years that has ever year-ed. Everyone staying inside so often absolutely helped drive audience growth, and it definitely didn't hurt that the streaming service launched with as strong an original series as The Mandalorian. Even though the pandemic lockdowns totally hindered the company's original roll-out plans for shows like The Falcon and the Winter Soldier and WandaVision, among others, Disney's content library featured more than enough new and classic material to draw millions upon millions of customers as the months went by. Currently, Disney+ has amassed a subscriber base of around 86.8 million, which is far higher than anyone in the company expected so quickly.
Of course, Disney's big Investor Day announcements for all those new Star Wars and MCU projects came with the caveat that the streaming service's prices are going up by $1 in 2021. So at the current level, that means an extra $86 million a month to help fund projects such as The Acolyte or Loki, among many other shows and movies.
With Disney+ coupled with Hulu under Disney's umbrella, the company is expected to hit around $12.36 billion in revenue, with Netflix projected to earn $12.95 billion, which would put the two entertainment providers closer than they've ever been. Who know what will happen if Disney and/or Hulu continues getting large groups of new subscribers throughout the next two years? Now that Disney+ could be pulling Netflix moves while its parent company is making Netflix money, it'll be interesting to see whether projects from the company's major franchises will taper off, or if execs will double down and continue to saturate the landscape with superheroes, Pixar characters and musical high-schoolers.
For those looking for something exciting on Disney+, The Mandalorian's Season 2 finale is hitting the streaming service on Friday, December 18, at 3:01 a.m. ET. While waiting for more originals to arrive, head to our Fall 2020 TV premiere schedule and our Winter and Spring TV schedule.
Nick is a Cajun Country native, and is often asked why he doesn't sound like that's the case. His love for his wife and daughters is almost equaled by his love of gasp-for-breath laughter and gasp-for-breath horror. A lifetime spent in the vicinity of a television screen led to his current dream job, as well as his knowledge of too many TV themes and ad jingles.
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