Disney+ Hotstar streams in Malaysia on June 1
By Tan Jee Yee May 4, 2021
- Prices just over US$13 for three months; “special packages” with Astro
- Exclusive streaming platform for some local Malaysian films, TV series
THE WAIT is over. Streaming service Disney+ Hotstar finally arrives in Malaysia on June 1, touting to bring with it 800 films and 18,000 episodes of TV series that range from Disney’s massive catalogue of content to local television series and films.
Subscription for the service will price at US$13.4 (RM54.90) for three months (two concurrent streams, on any device), though there will be “special packages” for Astro subscribers.
[RM1 = US$0.243]
Astro’s “Our Movies Pack” customers will be able to stream Disney+ content for an additional RM5 per month.
Speaking at the virtual launch, Henry Tan, group chief executive officer of Astro said, “This is a great start to an action-packed year where we will be aggregating subscription-based video on demand (SVOD) streaming services, giving our customers the widest variety of entertainment to choose from, value and convenience.”
Tan also revealed that Astro is working to make the service available via their Ultra and Ulti Connected Boxes later this year.
However, there aren’t any announcements yet on an annual subscription plan for Malaysians or whether there will be plans that support more concurrent streams.
The pricing is however fairly competitive – the cheapest Netflix plan in Malaysia is RM17 per month for mobile devices and RM55 for four concurrent streams,and support on different devices.
In the United States, an annual subscription for Disney+ is US$80 or roughly US$6 per month.
Disney+ Hotstar will provide users access to Disney’s entertainment brands, including Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars and National Geographic. This includes Disney+ originals the likes of The Mandalorian and Marvel Studios’ Wandavision, the company said.
The service will also carry a catalogue of general entertainment series and films, including Academy Award winner Nomadland and popular series like The Walking Dead and The Simpsons.
“Launching Disney+ Hotstar in Malaysia, in collaboration with Astro, is an important milestone for us as we continue expanding our footprint in Southeast Asia to bring our compelling entertainment offering to consumers in the region.
“Malaysians are not only connected, but also extremely tech-savvy and they represent some of Disney’s biggest fans in the region,” said David Shin, general manager, The Walt Disney Company Taiwan, Hong Kong and Southeast Asia.
Shin added that Disney is excited to be able to deliver a wide array of content for every one of all ages through our world-class platform, covering the best from Disney’s brands across a multitude of genres.
Home to Malaysian content
Disney+ Hotstar won’t just feature Hollywood productions. The service has entered into a series of multi-year agreements with leading Malaysian studios such as Skop Productions, Revolution Media Films, Primeworks Studios, WAU Animation, Act 2 Pictures, Les’ Copaque Production, and Red Filmsto name a few.
This makes the service an exclusive streaming home for a number of Malaysian content, including blockbusters like J2: J Retribusi and Zombitopia, which the company said will be launched straight on Disney+ Hotstar. Ejen Ali: The Movie 2, the sequel to 2019’s highest-grossing Malaysian film, will also stream exclusively on the platform after its theatrical debut.
The platform will also host a catalogue of Malaysian films and series, including the likes of Upin & Ipin, Yasmin Ahmad’s Talentime, and Roh, Malaysia’s most recent submission to the Academy Awards.
Besides that, primetime drama series including TV3’s Single Terlalu Lama and Kekasih Hati Mr. Bodyguard will premiere on Disney+ Hotstar first (at 7am) and on the same day as the linear telecast, giving audiences a chance catch these episodes 15 hours ahead of its TV airing.
Disney+ Hotstar will also feature content from other Asian regions, including Chinese films and series, as well as Hindi and Tamil content, it said.
“In addition to being able to bring amazing content from Disney’s incredible brands from all around the world, it has been such a privilege to collaborate with homegrown studios and creators to bring Malaysian stories to Disney+ Hotstar and drive the growth of our creative community,” said Ahmad Izham Omar, executive director of content and creative at Disney+ Hotstar, Southeast Asia.
"Through Disney+ Hotstar, we look forward to continue our deep-rooted support of Malaysian-made content and shining a well-deserved spotlight on inspiring Malaysian stories, filmmakers and talent.”
Subscribers will be able to stream Disney+ Hotstar on compatible mobile and connected TV devices at launch, including streaming media players. Each registered account can support two concurrent streams, and the majority of content is available for download on mobile and tablet.
Consumers can subscribe to the service directly from the Disney+ Hotstar website, the Disney+ Hotstar app on Android and iOS devices, or with Astro, starting from June 1.
Related Stories :