Even though Disney owns Star Wars and has its own streaming service, these are still untested waters for the Walt Disney Company, which will honor agreements it made to put certain Star Wars movies on other streaming outlets for a certain period of time.
Besides ‘The Last Jedi,’ what else will be missing?
The reason The Last Jedi won’t be on Disney’s own service is because the movie is still on Netflix. According to the site What’s On Netflix, the movie first appeared on Netflix last year, and the contract lasts for about a year and a half. So the movie will drop off Netflix later this year or sometime in 2020, then migrate over to Disney+.
Also missing will be Solo: A Star Wars Story, for the same reason — it landed on Netflix too. It will probably stay there until the middle of next year, by which point the whole Star Wars kit and caboodle, will be on Netflix.
Well, except for the original versions of the Original Trilogy, and the infamous Star Wars Holiday Special. If those ever appear on Disney+, it won’t be until after George Lucas leaves us.
And this is not a phenomenon unique to Star Wars. It’s happening with Marvel too. It’s why you’ll get Iron Man and Iron Man 3, but not Iron Man 2, because that movie went to Amazon Prime and Hulu.
Fans should remember that streaming is still a relatively new medium, so it will still be quite some time before all these deals that cross multiple countries get sorted out.
So which Star Wars movies will be on Disney+ at launch?
The good news is, there will be plenty of Star Wars to choose from at launch, and you might even find something you haven’t seen before. Here’s the complete list, per The Verge.
Star Wars: Episode IV — A New Hope (1977)
Star Wars: Episode V — The Empire Strikes Back (1980)
Star Wars: Episode VI — Return of the Jedi (1983)
Star Wars: Episode I — The Phantom Menace (1999)
Star Wars: Episode II — Attack of the Clones (2002)
Empire of Dreams: The Story of the Star Wars Trilogy (2004)
Star Wars: Episode III — Revenge of the Sith (2005)
Star Wars: The Clone Wars (2008)
Star Wars: The Clone Wars — Series (2008)
Star Wars Rebels (2014)
LEGO Star Wars: The New Yoda Chronicles (2014)
LEGO Star Wars: Droid Tales (2015)
Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015)
LEGO Star Wars: The Freemaker Adventures (2016)
Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (2016)
Star Wars Resistance (2018)
LEGO Star Wars: All-Stars (2018)
The Mandalorian (2019)
New Star Wars shows are coming
That last entry, a series revolving around bounty hunters, is the big one, because that’s the first live-action Star Wars TV series, and the primary creative force behind that is MCU veteran Jon Favreau.
Also announced, but with no definitive premiere dates, are a Rogue One spinoff, and a new series in which Ewan McGregor will reprise one of the few things that fans didn’t complain about in the prequel trilogy: His role as Obi-Wan Kenobi.
Moreover, Disney+ is probably serving as a kind of testing ground for Disney. Aside from Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker, it’s not certain which Star Wars movie we’ll be getting next.
There were three projects announced: a new movie or trilogy by Game of Thrones heads David Benioff and DB Weiss, and a new trilogy by Last Jedi director Rian Johnson, plus a movie produced by Marvel guru Kevin Feige. However, the finale of Game of Thrones alienated many fans, as did The Last Jedi.
Although both teams have their defenders, they both seem to be in a wait-and-see mode, depending on how The Rise of Skywalker fares. Signs are good: Ticket orders for Episode IX have actually outpaced that of Avengers: Endgame.