Should Disney+ get rid of the idea of ​​core brands?

When Disney+ launched in 2019, one of the main ways to search for new content was through the “five core brands” that were and still are on the homepage, and those brands are Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars and National Geographic With the Star brand later coming to markets outside the United States and Latin America.

The problem is that brands were a good idea on paper a year ago, but now years later it’s not great to implement now that Disney+ has expanded to be much bigger than intended. Let me explain.




Too many brands:

The main reason Disney+ has abandoned the idea of ​​core brands is because Disney owns so many brands that it doesn’t have a selection of “core brands”. Think about it, Disney is a brand in its own right, as are Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars and National Geographic, but alongside them, Disney+ has content from Touchstone Pictures, Hollywood Pictures, ABC, 20th Century Studios, Fox (only The Simpsons), and Freeform in the United States.

In the UK, Disney+ also streams content from all of the above brands as well as, Searchlight Pictures, FX, BabyTV, select titles from Hulu and library content from local content producers due to European quotas. Disney has folded ten of the aforementioned brands into Star Hub. The only brand that Disney+ has not used in the UK are the Hotstar and UTV Communications brands that produce and distribute content made in India.


Where does Lucasfilm fit in?

Let’s, first of all, consider the fact that in many countries Disney + broadcasts many films produced by Lucasfilm, the studio behind “Star Wars”, which are not related to this universe. Those films are “Willow”, “Strange Magic” and “Red Tails”. Now Lucasfilm’s bread and butter will always be the ‘Star Wars’ franchise that is a ‘core brand’ on Disney+ but with the upcoming Disney+ ‘Willow’ series and the upcoming ‘Indiana Jones 5’ series, it begs the question, where does Disney put Lucasfilm movies and series that aren’t tied to “star Wars”? In the UK, the films “Willow”, “Strange Magic” and “Red Tails” live under the Star brand, which is not in the United States.

If Disney struck a deal with Paramount for the rights to stream the first four “Indiana Jones” films and series before them, where would they live on Disney+?



Disney-branded now but not when released:

This is another example of a problem with these “core brands”, when movies like “Turner and Hooch”, “Who Framed Roger Rabbit” and “The Nightmare Before Christmas” were all released in the 80s and 90s but were released under the brand Touchstone Pictures now expired. Another example of a piece of content under the Disney brand is the original 1976 version of “The Muppet Show”.

Now, I understand quite a few movies and series that have followed “The Muppets” since the Disney acquisition in 2004 that have been labeled Disney, but including a non-Disney-branded series under the Disney brand makes the brand redundant.


What about licensed shows?:

This is a problem for many series on Disney+ where Disney doesn’t have shows like “Bluey,” “Miraculous Tales Of Ladybug and Cat Noir” and “Dino Ranch,” which Disney only has the right to broadcast on their channels. It licensed the broadcast rights to Disney+, but for an unknown period of time.

Since Disney doesn’t own the series, the fact that a series like Bluey appears under the Disney brand position on Disney+ is a bit odd.


Sixth “star” brand problem:

Many US subscribers seemed furious when Disney+ added the sixth brand in all major markets outside the US and Latin America, but Star has a big problem. Star is the center of “general entertainment” that is used as a kind of network to capture all content from brands outside of Disney+’s five core brands. In a country like the UK, Disney shows all the series and movies like “Modern Family”, “The Simpsons”, “Marley and Me” and “Alien” under the same Star banner. There are now thousands of titles under one hub, while Star Wars has barely twenty.

Star was a great idea, but combining nearly a dozen old brands into one hub makes the brand a single catchphrase to comb when looking for something new to watch, not to mention what is referred to as “General Entertainment.” The Star brand includes movies like ” Home Alone, Ice Age, and Night At The Museum all look like Disney movies.


How can this be fixed:

The branding in the UI isn’t perfect, so how can Disney+ do something better?

Well, in my opinion, the best way to fix this for Disney is to remove the primary brands from the homepage but have custom groups for all sub-brands in search. I think there are already rows within the Disney+ homepage for things like “Animated Movies”, “Marvel Cinematic Universe”, “Disney Channel Favorites” and “Originals”.

This makes a lot of sense to me because when Disney adds content from brands that haven’t been featured on Disney+, it becomes difficult to discover content that is already on Disney+. The Star struggles to have a lot of content, and even Disney+ in the US has this problem since some recent additions to their library include “Free Guy”, “Blackish”, “Grownish” and a whole lot of ESPN 30’s 30 documentaries, none of which It bears Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars or National Geographic tags.

If Disney+ removes the trademarks, it will also be easier to include any future content that Disney acquires, whether that is from a third-party studio purchase or by purchasing an IP address that doesn’t fit the five core brands. Some Disney themes/collections can add to the search to help organize content including “Classic Cartoons,” “20th Century Family Films,” “Hollywood Classics,” and collections of films and series by decade.

If Disney really does get rid of the core brands on Disney+, you’ll need to improve the collections and add the ability to search by more genres under the Movies and TV Series search tabs, and Music and Horror should be genres, not collections.

What do you think? Should Disney+ get rid of its core brands?


Ethan Holloway

Ethan is an autistic, type 1 diabetic, Disney fan who grew up with characteristics like Iron Man, The Lion King, Aladdin and Toy Story. Ethan someday wants to get his books/movies/TV shows to inspire people with disabilities to be themselves, but for now, Ethan covers his opinions on Disney, its content, and how Disney+ can be improved.


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