Disney Channel is an American pay television channel that serves as the flagship property of Disney Branded Television, a unit of the Disney Entertainment division of The Walt Disney Company.
Launched on April 18, 1983 under the name The Disney Channel as a premium channel on top of basic cable television systems, it originally showcased programming towards families due to availability of home television sets locally at the time. Since 1997, as just Disney Channel, its programming has shifted focus to target mainly children and adolescents between ages 7 and 17. The channel showcases original first-run children’s television series, theatrically-released and original television films and other selected third-party programming.
As of September 2022, Disney Channel is available on basic cable và satellite in kết thúc 190 million American & global homes. Original programming / nội dung on / from the channel spans television, trực tuyến, dế yêu, đoạn Clip on demand và dế yêu platforms, with the latter dominated by the DisneyNOW website-app hybrid sản phẩm. There were 46 Disney Channels available in 33 languages worldwide, [ 2 ] but some have either shut xuống dốc or declined in viewership since năm nay in parts of Europe & most of the Asia-Pacific due Khủng the rise of mạng xã hội truyền thông và streaming truyền thông platforms as well as the successful launch of Disney + in certain countries / regions / territories from 2020 onward .
Disney Channel launched nationally as a premium channel at 7:00 a.m. Eastern Time on April 18, 1983 under the name The Disney Channel. The channel’s development with help from its founding president Alan Wagner, and formally announced the launch of its family-oriented cable channel in early 1983. The channel – which initially maintained a 16-hour-per-day programming schedule from 7:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. Eastern and Pacific Time – would become available on cable providers in all 50 U.S. states by September 1983, and accrue a base of more than 611,000 subscribers by December of that year. In October 1983, the channel debuted its first made-for-cable movie, Tiger Town, which earned the channel a CableACE Award. The channel had reached profitability by January 1985, with its programming reaching 1.75 million subscribers by that point.
In September 1990, TCI’s Montgomery, Alabama, system became the first cable provider to carry the channel as a basic cable service. Between 1991 and 1996, a steadily increasing number of cable providers began shifting The Disney Channel from a premium add-on offering to their basic tiers, either experimentally or on a full-time basis; however, Walt Disney Company executives denied any plans to convert the channel into an ad-supported basic service, stating that the premium-to-basic shifts on some providers was part of a five-year “hybrid” strategy that allowed providers to offer the channel in either manner. On April 6, 1997, the channel officially rebranded as Disney Channel, although occasionally marketed as “Disney” from 1997 to 2002.
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Television films have also been produced for broadcast on Disney Channel since its launch under the banner of Disney Channel Premiere Films, with the first film released being Tiger Town in 1983, until October 1997, which is when they stopped using the “Premiere Films” label and renamed it the Disney Channel Original Movies (DCOM) thereafter. The first movie to be released under the Disney Channel Original Movie category was Under Wraps, a Halloween themed movie that aired for the first time on Disney Channel on October 25th, 1997.
The most successful original film under the banner in terms of popularity and accolades is High School Musical 2, which debuted on 17 August 2007 to 17.2 million viewers and set a current longstanding record for the highest-rated television premiere in the history of the channel. Following High School Musical 2, the movie that had the second highest-rated Disney Channel Original Movie (DCOM) premiere was Wizards of Waverly Place: The Movie, followed by Camp Rock, Descendants 2, Princess Protection Program, Teen Beach Movie, and Jump In!. It also set a basic cable record for the single most-watched television program until December 3, 2007 when corporate sister channel, ESPN, surpassed it with the telecast of an NFL game between the New England Patriots and Baltimore Ravens on its Monday Night Football programme by 0.3 million viewers more (17.5 million viewers). The Cheetah Girls media franchise was also notably successful in terms of merchandise and sales for its concert tours and soundtrack albums. Its debut film from 2003, being the first Disney Channel original musical television film, premiered to over 84 million global viewers and its sequel premiered to 8.1 million American viewers and in the process became the most successful of the film series. An 86-date concert tour featuring the eponymous girl group was ranked as one of the top 10 concert tours of 2006, smashing the record at the Houston Rodeo previously set by Elvis Presley in 1973, selling out with 73,500 tickets in three minutes at one point.
In addition to its original television films, Disney Channel has rights to theatrically released feature films, with some film rights shared with sister network, Freeform. Alongside films released by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures (mainly consisting of releases from Walt Disney Pictures, Walt Disney Animation Studios and Pixar), the channel also maintains rights to films from other studios. Some films released by Bagdasarian Productions (such as The Chipmunk Adventure and Alvin and the Chipmunks Meet Frankenstein) have also aired on Disney Channel, although most of them are not currently owned by any of The Walt Disney Company’s divisions.
- Mickey Mornings – A weekday morning block of preschool programming from Disney Junior. It first debuted on February 14, 2011 following the closure of Playhouse Disney; the current name and Mickey Mouse-hosted continuity segments were both launched in June 2020, replacing the previous “Disney Junior on Disney Channel” branding.
In between regularly scheduled programming & advertisement breaks, Disney Channel features bumpers. Thes e bumpers have varied in nội dung substantially throughout the history of the channel, created using a broad array of artistic methods such as traditional animation, digital animation, claymation, live action, và puppeteering. They have been praised for their high unique composition & ingenuity. [ 38 ]However, they became especially iconic in late 2002, when Disney Channel underwent a major rebranding, including in its bumpers và biệu tượng công ty. Thes e bumpers highlighted the iconic ‘ mouse ears ‘ biệu tượng công ty throughout them, featuring various videos that culminated in both the appearance of the biệu tượng công ty, alongside a newly introduced theme tuy nhiên, which is regarded as its most recognizable & is still used mập this day. This theme tuy nhiên consists of a four-note mnemonic jingle composed by Alex Lasarenko, former executive of Tonal Sounds & creative director at Elias Arts. [ 38 ] [ 39 ]In addition lớn its hình ảnh & jingle, Disney Channel’s most recognizable bumper định hình consists of a celebrity or figure from one of its programs holding a wand và drawing the then-current size of the Disney Channel hình ảnh on the màn hình hiển thị. This celebrity will introduce their name, the program they’re featured on, & finish with the line ” And you’re watching Disney Channel. ” Dubbed a ‘ Wand ID ‘ by fans, this định hình typically ends in a variation of the mnemonic. [ 38 ]
For a period, ESPN’s broadcasts of the Little League World Series baseball tournament frequently featured cross-promotion with music-related Disney Channel properties, with past editions having featured collaborations with High School Musical, the Jonas Brothers, Camp Rock, and Phineas and Ferb.
In March 2023, Disney Channel broadcast a live professional sporting event for the first time, carrying a youth-oriented alternate broadcast of a National Hockey League (NHL) game—known as the Big City Greens Classic—as part of ESPN’s coverage of the league. The broadcast was themed around the Disney Channel animated series Big City Greens, visualizing data from the league’s player and puck tracking system with 3D animated players.
Related channels & programs
Current sister channels
Disney Junior is a daily morning program block aimed at preschoolers, spiritually succeeding Playhouse Disney which launched on April 6, 1997, as part of Disney Channel’s morning lineup. On May 26, 2010, Disney-ABC Television Group (now Walt Disney Television) announced the expansion of the block in to a 24/7 cable and satellite channel which debuted on March 23, 2012. The channel would be commercial-free channel and compete with other preschooler-skewing cable channels such as the Nick Jr. Channel and Sprout (now Universal Kids). The channel features programs from Disney Channel’s existing preschool programming library and films/movies from the Walt Disney Pictures film library. On its launch, Disney Junior took over the channel space held by Soapnet – a Disney-owned cable channel featuring soap operas – due to that genre’s decline in popularity on broadcast television and the growth of video on demand, online streaming, and digital video recorders negating the need for a linear channel devoted to the soap opera genre. After a period during which cable providers unwilling to drop the network immediately retained it to prevent subscriber cancellations, Soapnet ceased all operations on December 31, 2013. The former Playhouse Disney block on Disney Channel rebranded as Disney Junior on February 14, 2011, along with the existing international channels. Disney-ABC Television Group once planned to launch a Playhouse Disney Channel in the United States in 2001, however it never happened despite launching internationally.
Launched on February 13, 2009 [ 47 ] as the successor phệ Toon Disney, Disney XD is a cable & satellite television channel which was originally aimed at young male audiences aged 6 mập 14, but has since included girls in its programming. [ 48 ] The channel showcases action và comedy programming from Disney Channel & the former Jetix block from Toon Disney, alongside some first-run original programming và off-network syndicated shows. Disney XD, unlike its sister channels Disney Channel & Disney Junior, operates as an ad-supported service, similar mập its predecessor Toon Disney. The channel carries the same name as an unrelated mini-site và truyền thông player on Disney. com, which stood for Disney Xtreme Digital, though it is said that the ” XD ” in the channel’s name does not have an actual meaning. [ 49 ]
Former sister channels
Disney Television Animation
Also known by its trade name, “Disney Channel Animation“, it is the television animation production studio division of The Walt Disney Studios and based in Glendale, California, providing original animated programming for the 3 main Disney-branded children’s channels.
It’s a Laugh Productions
A live-action production studio based in Studio City, Los Angeles, California, that provides original sitcoms và comedy programs primary for Disney Channel. Despite being the prime production source of Disney Channel shows, many of its projects are still co-produced & financed by The Walt Disney Company .
Walt Disney EMEA Productions
Walt Disney EMEA Productions Limited is the network’s European production studio located in London, England, which co-produces original programs within Europe alongside other companies.
Disney Original Documentary
Disney Original Documentary is a banner from Disney Branded Television for documentary-based programs broadcast on Disney Channel and released on Disney+.
In 2010, Disney Channel All Star Party was released for the Nintendo Wii. The four-player mascot party game, in which the stages resemble board games, features characters from Disney Channel programs such as Sonny with a Chance, Wizards of Waverly Place, and JONAS L.A. Several video games based on the Disney Channel animated series Phineas and Ferb were released by Disney Interactive Studios. The Disney Channel website also features various Flash games incorporating characters from the channel’s various program franchises. There have also been games based on Kim Possible and Hannah Montana.
In June 2012, The Walt Disney Company announced that it would stop advertising or promoting food or beverage products that vì not meet strict nutritional guidelines. Disney Channel purportedly became the first truyền thông company béo take such a stance on stopping the kinh doanh of junk food products phệ kids. Due bự its commercial-free định dạng, such advertising appears only in the khung of underwriter sponsorships during promotional breaks. [ 69 ]
On July 1, 2012, Disney Channel began providing Descriptive Video Service audio in compliance with the 21st Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act of 2010, which required network owned-and-operated stations and affiliates in the 25 largest television markets as well as the five highest-rated cable and satellite channels (including Disney Channel) to offer audio descriptions for the blind. This is accompanied by an on-screen mark at the beginning of certain scheduled programming indicating to viewers that the service is available. Some episodes of Gravity Falls, Austin and Ally, Good Luck Charlie, and Phineas and Ferb show the AD))) mark and a 2-tone sound repeated 3 times at the beginning of the episode to give notice of the audio description track available through the SAP feed. Disney Junior displays the AD)) mark and the intended SAP track on newer episodes of Little Einsteins. (ABC positions this mark in the bottom-left corner of the screen.)
Disney Channel has established presence in various regions across the Americas, most of Europe, the Middle East, Africa, India, và Nhật Bản. Channels were also available in nước Australia, New Zealand, Italy, United Kingdom & Ireland, Southeast Asia, Hong Kong, Taiwan, & Turkey, but ceased broadcast in the early 2020 s, with most nội dung moving lớn Disney +. [ 71 ]On December 14, 2022, Disney ceased its distribution of programs in Russia in response bự the ongoing Russian invasion of Ukraine. [ 72 ] [ 73 ] [ 74 ] [ 75 ]Disney Channel also licenses its programming lớn air on certain other broadcast và cable channels outside the United States ( formerly including Family Channel in Canada ), regardless of whether or not a localized channel feed already exists in that country .