Today, during The Walt Disney Company‘s Annual Meeting of Shareholders, several announcements were made, including that Disney+ subscribers have now surpassed the 100 million mark. It was also revealed that Black Widow is still coming to theaters on May 7, that Disneyland is slated to reopen in late April, and that Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure is coming to EPCOT this October.
Disney+ subscribers have passed the 100 million mark in just 16 months since its launch, Bob Chapek, Chief Executive Officer, The Walt Disney Company, announced today during the Company’s virtual Annual Meeting of Shareholders.
“The enormous success of Disney+ —which has now surpassed 100 million subscribers—has inspired us to be even more ambitious, and to significantly increase our investment in the development of high-quality content,” Mr. Chapek said.
“In fact, we set a target of 100+ new titles per year, and this includes Disney Animation, Disney Live Action, Marvel, Star Wars, and National Geographic. Our direct-to-consumer business is the Company’s top priority, and our robust pipeline of content will continue to fuel its growth.”
Disney+ launched in the U.S. on November 12, 2019, and has rolled out rapidly across Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Europe, Latin America, and most recently, Singapore.
SECRETS OF THE WHALES
Not announced at the meeting but related to Disney+, released the trailer for its upcoming original series Secrets of the Whales, which plunges viewers deep within the epicenter of whale culture to reveal the mysterious and beautiful world of five different whale species: orcas, humpbacks, belugas, narwhals and sperm whales.
The four-part series, from National Geographic, is executive produced by Academy Award®-winning filmmaker and conservationist James Cameron (Avatar) and narrated by award-winning actress and conservationist Sigourney Weaver (Alien, Avatar, Gorillas in the Mist). All four episodes will be available to stream exclusively on Earth Day, Thursday, April 22, 2021, exclusively on Disney+.
Featuring the expansive knowledge and skill of acclaimed National Geographic Explorer and Photographer Brian Skerry, the series ventures deep into the world of whales to witness the extraordinary communication skills and intricate social structures to reveal life and love from their perspective.
Secrets of the Whales unveils new science and technology to spotlight whales as they make lifelong friendships, teach clan heritage and traditions to their young, and grieve deeply for the loss of loved ones. Filmed over three years in 24 global locations, throughout this epic journey, we learn that whales are far more complex and more like us than ever imagined. This is a personal story that very few are lucky enough to witness… until now.
Secrets of the Whales is produced for National Geographic by Red Rock Films. For Red Rock Films, Brian Armstrong and Shannon Malone-DeBenedictis are executive producers.
For Earthship, James Cameron and Maria Wilhelm are executive producers and Kim Butts is associate producer. For National Geographic, Pamela Caragol is executive producer. The series is scored by composer Raphaelle Thibaut.
Chapek released the following statement: “Here in California, we’re encouraged by the positive trends we’re seeing and we’re hopeful they’ll continue to improve and we’ll be able to reopen our Parks to guests with limited capacity by late April – we look forward to publicizing an opening date in the coming weeks.
“While last week’s announcement stated that theme parks may open starting on April 1, the fact is it will take some time to get them ready for our guests – this includes recalling more than 10,000 furloughed Cast and retraining them to be able to operate according to the State of California’s new requirements.
“I am pleased to say the response has been great thus far, our Cast Members are excited to get back to work. And this is also good news for the Anaheim community, which depends on Disneyland for jobs and business generated by visitors.”
REMY’S RATATOUILLE ADVENTURE
Everyone’s favorite “Little Chef” is cooking up something really big for Walt Disney World Resort’s 50th anniversary, because the grand opening of Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure at EPCOT is set for October 1 of this year! That date will also mark exactly 50 years since Walt Disney World officially opened for the first time.
Disney says that in the new attraction, you’ll feel like you’ve shrunk to the size of Chef Remy as you scurry through Gusteau’s famous restaurant on a wild adventure for the whole family (no height requirement!). Based on Disney and Pixar’s Academy Award-winning Ratatouille, the experience will be part of a newly expanded France pavilion inside EPCOT that will also open Oct. 1.
When you round the corner into this new portion of the pavilion, you’ll be transported into a fanciful version of Paris that feels straight out of the animated film.
Also opening Oct. 1 will be La Crêperie de Paris, a new restaurant offering both table- and quick-service options. The menu will feature sweet crepes, savory buckwheat galettes (naturally gluten friendly) and authentic French hard cider.
The attraction, restaurant and pavilion expansion are all part of the historic transformation of EPCOT currently underway, celebrating how the impossible becomes possible through the power of imagination … and a little Disney magic.
This amazing time in the park’s history has already brought us a reimagined main entrance with new entrance fountain, “The Soul of Jazz” exhibit and new films in three different pavilions, with much more on the way.