After two years of virtual presentations, The Walt Disney Company held its first face-to-face Upfront in New York City, in an event that unveiled the company’s television news through all its services and platforms.
CEO Bob Chapek took the stage to celebrate the company’s legacy of excellence and laid out his vision for the next century. “Ten decades of creativity, innovation and determination created The Walt Disney Company as it is known today, the most enduring and revered name in entertainment,” said the executive. “As we usher in Disney’s second century, our goal is to once again transform entertainment by combining extraordinary storytelling with innovative technology to create an even bigger, more connected and more magical Disney universe.”
In addition, the event featured Kareem Daniel, chairman, Disney Media & Entertainment Distribution; Rita Ferro, President, Disney Advertising; Peter Rice, Chairman, Disney General Entertainment; Sean Bailey, President, Walt Disney Studios Motion Picture Production, and Kevin Feige, President, Marvel Studios and Chief Creative Officer, Marvel.
“We foster an environment where artists are encouraged to take risks,” Rice said. “Nurtured by experienced executives who have developed some of the most successful shows in the history of our business. And it comes to life through our partnerships with the world’s best talent.”
Talent participation represented nearly every brand in the portfolio. Among the stars who appeared were Kerry Washington, Emayatzy Corinealdi, Claire Danes, Ellen Pompeo, Kumail Nanjiani, Kris Jenner, Khloé Kardashian, Joe Buck and Suni Lee, among others.
Former NFL stars Peyton and Eli Manning introduced the sports section, revealing the expansion of the franchise Places. Sue’s Places will explore college basketball with Sue Bird as the host. PK’s Places delve into ice hockey, while McEnroes’s Places will present tennis stories.
For his part, Bailey presented previews of films for Disney +, including disenchanted Y Hocus Pocus 2. Feige offered updates on the second season of Loki from Marvel Studios and Threw out. The executive was accompanied by Samuel L. Jackson to talk about the new Marvel Studios series, Secret Invasion, which will soon be in service. Tatiana Maslany (she hulk) revealed the first trailer for She-Hulk: Attorney at Law.
Other advances included Only Murders in the Building, Reasonable Doubt, Fleishman is in Trouble, Welcome to Chippendales, 30 for 30 and the multi-part documentary about Colin Kaepernick, directed by Spike Lee. The company also announced the expansion of its sports rights.