STAR is a hub within the Disney+ streaming service for television and film content intended for an adult audience. The hub is available in a subset of countries where Disney+ is operated; launching on February 23, 2021, in Canada, the United Kingdom, Western Europe, Australia, New Zealand and Singapore, and launched in Japan on October 27 alongside a upgrade to Disney+ in that region.
STAR includes content from ABC Signature, 20th Television, FX Networks, Freeform, 20th Century Studios, Searchlight Pictures, Touchstone Pictures and Hollywood Pictures as well as third-party content. Shows from other Disney-owned outlets, such as Hulu, will be exclusively distributed in multiple international markets through STAR as "STAR Originals".
STAR expanded to more markets later that year. In Latin America, a separate STAR+ streaming service was launched on August 30, 2021, instead with sports from ESPN due to many preexisting agreements with 21CF content.note To anticipate for the brand launch and expansion, Disney rebranded their STAR India channels in the UK and Europe to Utsav on January 11, 2021 in order to avoid confusion. They rebranded all of their FOX channels in Latin America and Brazil to STAR channels in February 22, of that same year.
The "STAR" brand originated as a Hong Kong-based satellite broadcaster which operated under that name starting in 1991, and had been acquired by News Corporation in 1993. After 2009, the Star brand was mainly restricted to the now separately-owned Star China Media, as well as Star India, which operates primarily in India but also distributes Indian programming worldwide. Star India (and the other remaining operations outside mainland China) were then acquired by Disney as part of its acquisition of 21st Century Fox in 2019.
During an earnings call on August 5, 2020, Disney CEO Bob Chapek announced that Disney planned to launch a new international, general entertainment service under the Star brand name in 2021, slated to feature more mature content than what was offered on Disney+. The plan superseded a previously announced international expansion of Disney-controlled American streaming service Hulu, which has only expanded outside the United States to Japannote . Chapek argued that the Hulu brand was not well-known outside of the United States, along with "Star" being a much more marketable service mark worldwide. In India and most of Asia, the brand is not available due to the presence of Disney+ Hotstar in those regions, with that service carrying general entertainment content already seen on STAR.
Disney will also distribute content from third-parties globally, as Disney has signed deals with companies such as TBS Television and Nelvana to supply content for STAR.
In 2022, STAR India was renamed to Disney STAR mainly to distinguish itself from the STAR brand on Disney+ outside of the US.
List of Star Originals:<!—index—>
- Black★★Rock Shooter: Dawn Fall
- Summer Time Rendering
- Platinum End (Taiwan, Hong Kong and Singapore)
- Darby and the Dead
- Fresh (2022)
- No Exit
- Prey (2022)
- The Princess
- Vacation Friends
- The Valet
- Barbarian (select markets)note
- BLACKPINK: The Movie (South-East Asia, Oceania and Korea)
- Death On The Nile (Hong Kong)note
- The Eyes of Tammy Faye (select markets)note
- West Side Story (Hong Kong)note
- The Bob's Burgers Movie (except Poland)note
FX on Hulu
- A Teacher (2020) (Germany, Austria, Switzerland)
- American Horror Story (season 10 onward; select territories)
- American Horror Stories (All markets except Australia and New Zealand)
- Reservation Dogs (all markets except Australia)
- Y: The Last Man (2021) (All markets except Canada and Australia)
- Dollface (Italy, United Kingdom, Ireland, France, Sweden and Norway)
- The Dropout
- Faraway Downs
- The Hardy Boys (all markets except Canada)
- High Fidelity (Portugal, Denmark, Finland, Sweden, Belgium)
- History of the World Part II
- Love, Victor (moved to general Disney+ for season 3)
- Only Murders in the Building
- The Orville
- Pam & Tommy
- Reboot (2022)
- Abbott Elementary (Australia, New Zealand and Taiwan (Latin America and Brazil through STAR+))
- Bel-Air (Latin America & Brazil (through STAR+))note
- Big Sky (All markets except Canada)
- Blowing Kisses (Spain, Finland, Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Portugal, United Kingdom, and Ireland)
- Boris (season 4)
- Chucky (Latin America & Brazil (through STAR+))note
- Filthy Rich (Italy, Belgium)
- Genius (season 3) (All markets except Canada)note
- Godfather of Harlem (Italy, Belgium, Portugal)
- grown•ish (select markets)
- How I Met Your Father
- Last Man Standing (United Kingdom, Ireland)
- Next (2020) (Italy, United Kingdom, and Ireland)
- Rookie Cops
- That One Word – Feyenoord (United Kingdom, Ireland, and the Netherlands)
- Small & Mighty
- The Walking Dead (2010) (United Kingdom, Italy, Ireland (Latin America & Brazil through STAR+))
- Wedding Season
- Tokyo MER (international distribution outside of Japan, will be also available on the Japanese Disney+)
- Crossing Swords
- Futurama (Season 8 onwards)
- Koala Man
- M.O.D.O.K. (2021)
- Solar Opposites
- American Dad!
- Bob's Burgersnote
- The Simpsons (Canada, Singapore, Australia and Spain (Latin America & Brazil through STAR+)) note
- Family Guy (Canada (Latin America & Brazil through STAR+))note
- The Great North (Singapore, United Kingdom and Ireland (Latin America & Brazil through STAR+)) note
Tropes associated with STAR:
- All-Star Cast: The service's advertising in Europe emphasizes the big star names of the films that it streams (also fitting its name in the process).
- Bowdlerization: Family Guy and American Dad! use the broadcast versions of the shows as opposed to the DVD cuts, meaning that most profanity is bleeped and various scenes are cut down or changed. In Family Guy's case, it also means that any Extra-Long Episode (such as "And Then There Were Fewer" and the Star Wars parodies) is instead shown in the syndicated, 2-part versions.
- Darker and Edgier: The service streams Disney properties (particularly Fox acquisitions) that the other parts of Disney+ can't, for adult audience reasons. For instance, among Marvel Comics properties, Deadpool, Deadpool 2, Logan, Helstrom and M.O.D.O.K. (2021) now call it home instead of the dedicated Marvel section of Disney+.
- Late Export for You:
- Some shows billed as Star Originals, including shows from Hulu like Love, Victor, Solar Opposites and Helstrom, had a weekly episode release schedule starting with the first episode being released when Star was added to Disney+, even when those shows had already released full seasons on Hulu.
- Years after launch, a lot of series made by Hulu will typically not be released weekly as they are in the U.S., but some time after the whole seasons have been released there.
- Same Face, Different Name: It's basically the worldwide version of Hulu, only without third-party content. This was intentional, according to Disney CEO Bob Chapek as the Hulu brand wasn't well-known outside the United States and felt the Star brand would be more marketable worldwide.