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Disney+ Delays Eastern Europe Start to Summer 2022; Plans Wider Launch in Japan This October

Michael King

Disney CEO Bob Chapek announced on Thursday that plans to launch Disney+ in Eastern Europe have been delayed from late 2021 until summer 2022. According to Chapek, the delay is to accommodate an expanded footprint that will include parts of the Middle East and South Africa.

Chapek made the announcement as part of Disney’s Q3 2021 Earnings Call.

In recent months, Disney has had a successful launch of its Disney+ Hotstar streaming service in Malaysia and Thailand. Going forward, Disney is continuing to expand its streaming footprint around the world with the upcoming launch of Star+ in Latin America on August 31.

Disney+ is available on a limited basis in Japan, but is planning on a wider launch in Japan in October. Following that launch, the company plans to enter eight additional markets, including South Korea, Taiwan, and Hong Kong, in mid-November.

Chapek said the international efforts will all be on display as part of a large-scale marketing effort dubbed “Disney+ Day” marking the second anniversary of the launch of the service.

“The power of the synergy will be on full display on November 12th when we celebrate Disney Plus day with an unprecedented, company-wide, promotional campaign,” Chapek said.

Some features appearing on Disney+ by November 12 include the just-announced Home Alone reboot movie Home Sweet Home Alone, the summer motion picture Disney’s Jungle Cruise will be available for free on Disney+ on that date.

“Disney Plus Day will be a balanced approach between global and local product. We’re going to have a real exciting lineup as you might guess as we approach those consumers that have not yet signed up for Disney Plus with a really attractive group of titles to be announced,” he said. “But I think it gives us an opportunity to provide a focal point for consumers that have not yet tripped over to Disney Plus. It is going to give us a benefit not only in the U.S., but (around the world) as well.”

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