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What’s on Star on Disney+? The best TV shows and films coming to the new service

Evening Standard logo Evening Standard 23/02/2021 Katie Rosseinsky

Just when you’d got your head around the seemingly endless viewing possibilities that Disney+ has to offer (Soul! Baby Yoda! The Hamilton film!), the mega-studio launches a brand new arm of its streaming platform.

Set to arrive on the service on February 23, Star will focus on more grown-up series and films, hosting programmes and movies from studios now owned by Disney, including FX and 20th Century Studios. It’ll be available to all Disney+ subscribers for no extra cost (and there’ll be parental control options to prevent your 10-year-old from, say, sitting down to watch Desperate Housewives instead of High School Musical: The Musical: The Series).

Here’s our pick of the best the new platform has to offer, from original series to old favourites and critically acclaimed movies, along with everything you need to know about signing up...

How much does a Disney+ Star subscription cost?

Access to Star is now included in every Disney+ membership. If you decide to join the service today, it will cost £7.99 per month or £79.90 for one year; if you’re already a monthly subscriber, the price will remain at £5.99 for the next six months and will not increase until August 23, while if you’ve previously bought an annual membership, the price won’t change until your next annual renewal. Got it?

Does Disney+ Star have parental controls?

If you’re concerned about little darlings accidentally accessing some wildly unsuitable US drama en route to the latest charming cartoon, fear not. Disney+ has introduced parental control settings to coincide with Star’s launch, allowing you to add an age rating and password protection to your user profiles.

Which original shows are coming to Star?

Big Sky

Ryan Phillippe sitting in a car: Ryan Phillippe stars in Big Sky as a private investigatorABC © Provided by Evening Standard Ryan Phillippe stars in Big Sky as a private investigatorABC

The latest project from David E. Kelley, the writer behind HBO hits Big Little Lies and The Undoing, will debut on Star in February. Big Sky follows a pair of private detectives (Kylie Bunbury and Ryan Phillippe) as they race to track down two sisters who have been abducted, before the kidnapper strikes again.

Love, Victor

A spin-off from the acclaimed 2018 YA movie Love, Simon, this second Star original series follows Victor, a high school student adjusting to a new city and grappling with his sexuality.

Solar Opposites

An animated sit-com for grown-ups from Rick & Morty co-creator Justin Roiland and Mike McMahan.

Helstrom

A Marvel series which previously debuted on Hulu in the US, Helstrom follows the son and daughter of a mysterious killer as they grapple with their sinister family dynamic.

Which other TV shows are now on Disney+ Star?

Here’s our pick of some of the very best series available on the platform now...

24

Each series of this Noughties thriller, starring Kiefer Sutherland as counter-terrorism operative Jack Bauer, famously consists of 24 episodes, one for each hour of the day. God knows we’ve all got a bit more TV viewing time on our hands than we’d expected this time last year, so why not embrace it and relive one of Bauer’s extremely stressful days in real time?

Lost

One of the most talked-about - and mind-boggling - series of the Noughties, Lost follows the survivors of a plane crash who find themselves stranded on an island somewhere in the Pacific Ocean. Yes, everything gets a bit convoluted towards the end, but the first few seasons are golden.

Desperate Housewives

Marcia Cross, Eva Longoria, Felicity Huffman posing for the camera: Time to head back to Wisteria LaneABC © Provided by Evening Standard Time to head back to Wisteria LaneABC

With its soapy storylines and a script that ricochets with zingy one-liners, Desperate Housewives is ripe for a re-watch (in fact, it’s genuinely surprising that no one has tried to revive Marc Cherry’s series yet, given TV execs’ collective passion for rebooting past hits).

How I Met Your Mother

There was a time when E4 seemed to be exclusively devoted to broadcasting hour upon hour of US sitcom How I Met Your Mother, which follows Ted (Josh Radnor) in his quest for The One. If you miss those halcyon days, the whole thing - which also stars Jason Segel, Alyson Hannigan, Cobie Smulders and Neil Patrick Harris - will be streaming on Star for your re-watching pleasure.

Prison Break

a group of people looking at a phone: Noughties thriller Prison Break will also air on the streaming serviceFox © Provided by Evening Standard Noughties thriller Prison Break will also air on the streaming serviceFox

Another Noughties favourite, Prison Break follows Michael Scofield (Wentworth Miller) as he gets himself locked up in jail - so that he can help his brother, who is on death row and has just months left to live, to escape.

The X-Files

Offering up another dose of nostalgia, Star will also boast all series of Nineties hit The X-Files, starring David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson as Mulder and Scully, FBI agents tasked with investigating paranormal phenomena.

Atlanta

Donald Glover et al. jumping in the air: Donald Glover stars in and wrote the seriesFX © Provided by Evening Standard Donald Glover stars in and wrote the seriesFX

Donald Glover’s Emmy and Golden Globe-winning series is among the more recent offerings that will be available to stream on Disney’s new platform. Glover stars as Earn, a college dropout who returns home to discover that his cousin has become one of Atlanta’s most in-demand rappers.

Black-ish

This acclaimed US sit-com stars Tracee Ellis Ross and Anthony Anderson as an upper middle class American couple grappling with bringing up their four children. It’s been widely praised for sparking important conversations about race, has spawned a handful of spin-off series and has earned Ross a Golden Globe.

Feud

Replay Video

Ryan Murphy’s lavishly appointed eight-part exploration of the love-hate relationship between legendary actresses Bette Davis and Joan Crawford is a must-watch for anyone with even a passing interest in the golden age of Hollywood. When the pair are cast opposite one another in camp classic Whatever Happened To Baby Jane?, long-dormant professional jealousies are stirred up. Susan Sarandon and Jessica Lange are brilliant as Davis and Crawford, larger than life but never veering into caricature territory.

Glee

Remember that strange period in the late Noughties, when Glee’s chirpy vocal group covers of pop hits dominated the top 40? Now’s your time to relive those glory days, with all six series of the all-singing, all-dancing comedy drama available to stream on Star. If you can make it through Mr Schu’s raps without passing out from residual embarrassment, though, you are made of stronger stuff than I.

Grey’s Anatomy

The first 15 series of Shonda Rhimes’s hit medical drama will be making their way to Star (you’ll have to look elsewhere for the two most recent seasons) so prepare to have your heart broken a million times over - this one is a bona fide tearjerker.

And what about films?

Borat

Very nice! The first film outing for Sacha Baron Cohen’s comic creation sees hapless reporter Borat Sagdiyev dispatched to US and A to make a documentary. Baron Cohen’s interactions with unsuspecting Americans are by turns hilarious and eye-wateringly uncomfortable.

The Grand Budapest Hotel

Replay Video

As we all wait (im)patiently for the release of the pandemic-delayed The French Dispatch, why not revisit Wes Anderson’s 2013 hit The Grand Budapest Hotel? This millennial pink-hued confection boasts one of Anderson’s best ensemble casts, led by Ralph Fiennes as charming concierge Gustave. Tony Revolori is his young protegé Zero, who’s hopeless in love with Saoirse Ronan’s Agathe.

The Devil Wears Prada

Yes, you can probably recite Miranda Priestley’s speech about cerulean blue off by heart by now, but we all know that won’t stop you re-watching The Devil Wears Prada for the thousandth time. In fairness, it has aged better than a lot of its mid-Noughties counterparts: Meryl Streep is brilliant as icy editor-in-chief Priestley and Emily Blunt is equally good as her acid-tongued, highly quotable assistant.

The Favourite

Olivia Colman standing in front of a window: Rachel Weisz and Olivia Colman in The FavouriteAP © Provided by Evening Standard Rachel Weisz and Olivia Colman in The FavouriteAP

This anarchic (and sometimes anachronistic) re-imagining of the power struggles at the heart of Queen Anne’s court won Olivia Colman an Oscar. Even if period dramas aren’t usually your cup of tea, this one is a total riot, complete with pitch black humour, racing ducks and brilliant lead performances from Colman, Rachel Weisz and Emma Stone.

Moulin Rouge!

Almost 15 years on from its release, the denouement of Baz Luhrmann’s spectacular spectacular still has the power to reduce us to a weeping wreck. Ewan McGregor plays naive poet Christian, who falls hard for beautiful dancer Satine (Nicole Kidman). From the karaoke-friendly Elephant Love Medley to McGregor’s version of Your Song and the heartbreaking Come What May, the soundtrack is brilliant.

Romeo + Juliet

Another Luhrmann favourite, Romeo+Juliet sees the director swap fair Verona for contemporary(ish) Verona Beach. Leonardo DiCaprio and Claire Danes are our star-crossed lovers, and the film’s neon-soaked aesthetic and pitch-perfect soundtrack is still just as striking as it was on release in 1996.

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