Streaming service Disney+ have announced that they will be investing heavily in the Australian market, starting with the development of nine shows which will be produced and developed locally, featuring stars from within the domestic industry.
Kylie Watson-Wheeler, senior vice-president of The Walt Disney company in Australia & New Zealand made the announcement showcasing a number of highly promising shows that will only be available via the platform.
Watson-Wheeler highlighted the incredible depth and talent of the Australian market which made it incredibly easy for Disney to create these shows, adding that this is only the beginning in what promises to be a long partnership.
She went on to reveal the upcoming original series, most of which are still in development and will be released sometime in 2023, separating them into three distinct categories.
Within the documentary category are the Matildas: World At Our Feet series, which puts the spotlight on the Australian women’s soccer team, showcasing the personal journeys of the players and how they come together to form an incredibly strong group, with the challenge of next year’s World Cup, which is set to be played on home soil, ahead of them.
Next up is yet another sports documentary called Fearless: The Inside Story of the AFLW. As the title implies, this series will go deep into the Aussie Women’s Football industry to see how much its culture has changed throughout the years to create an environment that is more inclusive and inviting for all female players.
Another highly promising documentary series is Shipwreck Hunters Australia, which follows the adventures of a diving crew that go searching after missing secrets hidden beneath Aussie waters and boat remains that even the bravest of divers wouldn’t dare to explore.
Finally, closing the documentary series is Chasing Waves, a show that puts the spotlight on the sport of surfing and its rise in popularity in Japan. Chasing Waves is just as much a show about sport as it is about multiculturalism and life in the land of the rising sun, combining two entirely different elements to come up with surprisingly intriguing results.
The next two shows were placed under the Disney platform’s Lifestyle & Factual category. They are Donna Hay Christmas and What’s your toy Story.
Donna Hay Christmas will feature acclaimed Aussie chef Donna Hay – as one can easily imply by the title – cooking up her favourite recipes for the holiday season. Hay promises to share her unique cooking style with audiences, helping them create dishes that will make the most memorable holiday for all the family.
What’s Your Toy Story is a game show which will be hosted by Aussie TV and radio sensation Rove McManus. The game will feature teams of kids and adults, in a competition of creativity and storytelling heavily based on Pixar’s popular animated franchises.
For the end, the hosts from the Walt Disney company revealing three new, original series which will tie into their Scprited category: The Clearing, The Artful Dodger and Last Days of the Space Age.
The Clearing will be an event series based on the titular novel by JP Pomare and inspired by real-life Aussie cult The Family and its leader, Anne Hamilton-Byrne. In the starring roles are Teresa Palmer (Bedtime Stories, The Sorcerer’s Apprentice), Miranda Otto (The Lord of the Rings series, The Thin Red Line) and Guy Pearce (The King’s Speech, Prometheus, Iron Man 3.)
The Artful Dodger is a story heavily based on Charles Dickens’ novel Oliver Twist, relaying the events that occur ten years later. Full of love, betrayal, redemption and ambition, this story written by James McNamara and Andrew Knight and directed by Jeffrey Walker promises to keep viewers on their feet.
Last Days of the Space Age is a show in the comedy/drama genre starring House and Chicago Fire protagonist Jesse Spencer, set in Perth back in the late 70’s. During those days, the Western Australian city was considered to be the at the centre of the world. This show follows the stories of three local families who find themselves caught up in Perth’s ongoing political developments.
All nine of these shows are set to become available on the Disney+ platform, both locally and internationally, sometime in the next year, although final dates have yet to be revealed by the company. The first of them will be Fearless: The Story of the AFLW, which will launch next summer.
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