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Disney+ Has Successful Live Stream Test of the 2022 Oscar Nominees, What Will Disney+ Live Stream Next?

Lauren Forristal

In a first for Disney+, the service live-streamed the announcement of the 94th annual Academy Awards nominations this morning at 8:15 AM ET. It was then available on-demand once the live stream ended.

A spokesperson from Disney told The Streamable, “We performed a test for live streaming capabilities on Disney+ in the U.S. with this morning’s Academy Award nominations. We are pleased with the results and will continue to test as part of our ongoing and iterative approach to deliver the best user experiences to consumers.”

The live stream of the Oscar nominations on the streaming service was a special broadcast of Good Morning America (GMA). The Oscar nominations were hosted by actors Leslie Jordan and Tracee Ellis Ross. Viewers could watch the GMA hosts talk about the nominations after the main presentation. It was very clear that Disney+ was getting a special feed. At the end, the GMA hosts even started laughing and making a joke about how Disney+ kept streaming during commercial breaks for the traditional linear version of the show. While the GMA presentation was a little different from normal, the live stream went without a hitch.

Disney’s “Encanto” earned three Oscar nominations in the following categories: Best Original Score (by Germaine Franco), Best Original Song (“Dos Oruguitas” by Lin-Manuel Miranda), and Best Animated Feature Film. Furthermore, “Luca” and “Raya and the Last Dragon” were both nominated for Best Animated Feature Film. The Academy Awards ceremony will air live in the US on ABC on Sunday, March 27, at 8 PM ET.

In the same way that streaming giant Netflix operates, Disney+ offers tons of entertainment programming to watch on-demand, but never any live events, live sports, or news programming. Adding the new ability to live-stream events like covering the Oscar ceremony would give Disney+ a huge competitive advantage over Netflix. As of early October, Disney+ hit 118.1 million subscribers, inching its way towards Netflix and its subscriber count of 221.8 million at the end of 2021.

A lot of doors could open for Disney+ if they decided to move forward with live programming. In Latin America, it opens the door for Star+ and Disney+ to merge into one app whereas live sports could also be added to the platform internationally. Hotstar and ESPN Player could also be combined into Disney+ across Europe, Africa, and the Middle East. For the U.S., it means the chances of Hulu, Disney+ and ESPN+ merging just got higher. Especially since the company has been adding more mature content and ESPN documentaries in the past couple of weeks.

Disney has officially stepped its metaphorical foot into the live stream door with a new world of TV formats to explore. Perhaps they will even live stream a Marvel movie red-carpet event? The options are endless and hopefully, this is only the beginning for the platform.

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