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200px-Disney XD.svg
Disney XD
is an American digital cable and satellite television network, owned by the Disney-ABC Television Group division of The Walt Disney Company. It is also a sister channel division of The Disney Channel. Disney XD mostly airs action-oriented children's animated television series, with some live-action programming and movies aimed at male viewers aged 6 to 14.

Disney XD airs original Disney XD content, such as Zeke and Luther, Kickin' It, I'm in the Band, and Pair of Kings and some of Disney Channel's most popular programming, including recent and archived original series, such as The Suite Life of Zack and Cody and Phineas and Ferb, as well as some made-for-TV movies.

It is offered with Spanish language audio, either via a separate channel as part of a Spanish language network package sold by cable and satellite providers or a separate audio track with the SAP option, depending on the system. The channel also offers a video-on-demand service to digital cable and IPTV subscribers, offering free programming.

OverviewEdit

The network launched in 2007 as an Internet channel for Disney and then relaunched on February 13, 2009 as a television channel, replacing Toon Disney and its evening programming block Jetix, the latter of which targeted a similar audience as Disney XD.[1][2] Its target market is boys from 9 to 14,[3][4] though it also airs programming aimed at older audiences.

Like its predecessor Toon Disney, yet unlike sister network Disney Channel, Disney XD is advertiser-supported and runs commercials for mostly non-Disney branded products during breaks, as well as network promos. Despite Disney XD's relationship to Disney Channel and airing some Disney Channel series, there is little cross-promotion of Disney Channel shows on the channel, though Disney Channel cross-promotes Disney XD programming within their promo breaks and has aired some of Disney XD's original programming. However, cross-promotion is more common for networks such as ABC or ESPN.

According to Gary Marsh, President of Entertainment for Disney Channel Worldwide, "XD" was chosen because it's an emoticon for laughter. Marsh notes that "the letter X has many cool associations" and that "the beauty of it is the audience can imbue it with all sorts of positive attributes." Coincidentally though, the name "Disney XD" was previously used as the name for an online media player and interactive web portal on the Disney.com website, which in that case stood for Disney Xtreme Digital.

Since Disney XD's launch in the U.S., localized versions have launched in other countries, typically replacing international versions of Toon Disney or Jetix, depending on which network was available in the particular market.

ProgrammingEdit

Disney XD broadcasts original series such as Pair of Kings, Kick Buttowski: Suburban Daredevil, Kickin' It, Rated A For Awesome, Fort Boyard: Ultimate Challenge, and Mr. Young. Repeats of former Disney XD original series include Kid vs. Kat, Jimmy Two-Shoes, Zeke and Luther, and I'm in the Band. Reruns of Disney Channel original series includes American Dragon: Jake Long, The Emperor's New School, Fish Hooks, The Legend of Tarzan, Phineas and Ferb, The Suite Life of Zack & Cody, and it's spin-off series The Suite Life on Deck. Acquired programing from other networks includes Fantastic Four, Gargoyles, The Incredible Hulk, Iron Man, My Babysitter's a Vampire, Silver Surfer, Spider-Man, Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends, Spider-Man Unlimited, X-Men, and X-Men Evolution. Future original series includes Lab Rats, Tron: Uprising, and Motorcity. Future acquired programing includes Ultimate Spider-Man, BoBoiBoy, and Hulk and the Agents of S.M.A.S.H..

A notable aspect of Disney XD's original series is that they tend to feature predominately male casts, and as such, its original programs feature very few females as main characters (with most live-action originals typically featuring only one female in its main cast) in comparison to Disney Channel's original programs, which tend to feature an equal or nearly equal amount of main characters of either gender.[citation needed] New episodes of live-action original series are usually aired on Monday nights, while new episodes of animated original series air on Saturday mornings. In addition, Disney XD airs movies, but unlike Disney Channel, movies are typically not aired in prime time; instead, films generally air at 5 pm ET with double features airing a few times a week. The channel's first (and so far only) made-for-TV movie, Skyrunners, premiered on November 27, 2009.

In addition to full-length live-action and animated original series, the channel also debuts short series similar to those seen on Disney Channel during commercial breaks, such as Moises Rules, The Next X, and its spin-off The Next Winter X. These shows often follow other network shows and last about two to three minutes or sometimes fifteen minutes, with the exception of a few short-form series. Often, these shows are televised in the last two minutes of the program, with the exception of the Disney XD Shortstop, or following the ending of a movie. ESPN's SportsCenter provides youth-oriented sports updates periodically between shows. Edited segments of ABC's Wipeout are also broadcast.

Programming blocksEdit

Marvel UniverseEdit

When Disney-ABC announced the closure date of SOAPnet and the premiere date of Disney Junior the Channel, Disney-ABC also announced that Disney XD will launch a dedicated Marvel programming block featuring the premiere of Ultimate Spider-Man on April 1, 2012.

The Marvel Universe block will be the latest manifestation of Disney's 2009 acquisition of Marvel. In addition to Ultimate Spider-Man the block will also offer such Marvel content as the return of The Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes as well as new short-form animation series and live-action interstitials.

Iron Man, Hulk, Thor and Captain America will be among the characters featured in the Marvel Universe programming.

"Iconic Marvel heroes and villains and stories with core values of accomplishment, discovery and growth make Marvel Universe a perfect complement to Disney XD and a destination for parents and kids to experience together," Disney Channels Worldwide topper Gary Marsh said.

Drake Bell will voice the lead character of "Ultimate Spider-Man" and will be joined in the voice cast by Chi McBride, JK Simmons, Clark Gregg, Steven Weber and Marvel legend Stan Lee. The show puts Peter Parker on a team with four other teenage superheroes.

Marvel Animation is producing with a team including chief creative officer Joe Quesada, Paul Dini, Brian Michael Bendis and Joe Casey, Joe Kelly, Duncan Rouleau and Steven T. Seagle of Man of Action Studios. [5] [6]

Disney XD HDEdit

Disney XD HD is the branding used for the high-definition feed of the network. It is offered on some cable providers, as well as both satellite providers and telco IPTV providers in the Disney/ABC television networks preferred HD picture format of 720p. The high-definition feed airs a limited amount of programming in high definition, mainly Disney XD's original programming as well as certain films and some episodes of Disney Channel series made after 2009. A high-definition simulcast of an international version of Disney XD HD in the Netherlands launched on April 15, 2010 and in Latin America launched in 2011. Disney XD UK has released Disney XD HD on October 18, 2010. On June 1, 2011, Disney XD Canada created an HD feed along with its launch. Shaw Direct currently[when?] does not carry the HD version of Disney XD due to a dispute with Disney/ABC.

International channelsEdit

Disney XD, similarly born of a merger between Jetix and Toon Disney, is also available on cable systems in France, Germany, Greece, India, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Latin America, Malaysia, Netherlands, Poland, South Africa, Spain and United Kingdom. A Canadian channel has launched on June 1 ,2011. [7]

Latin AmericaEdit

As Jetix, the channel aired mostly animated series, including the Jetix Animation Concepts and Disney Channel Original Series. Some live-action series like Power Rangers or local Casi Ángeles were also aired. Third-party movies and series were also aired. The Fox Kids World Cup was re-named Jetix Kids World Cup and later just Jetix Cup and became smaller, with only Latin American countries playing. Eventually, Jetix started airing old series from Disney Channel, series that had been dropped or canceled from that channel. Those series include Phil of the Future, Dave the Barbarian, Even Stevens and some others. By 2008, most of the Jetix programming included The Fairly OddParents, Pucca, Dinosaur King , and Power Rangers. Those series took most of the schedule of the channel. The channel also premiered a Disney Channel Original Movie, Camp Rock.

Late in 2008, Disney Channel Worldwide stated that Jetix Latin America, would become Disney XD in 2009.[8] The Jetix Cup was renamed Disney Soccer Cup to fit with the Disney XD re-branding.

Finally, Disney and ESPN Media Networks announced on May 2009 that Jetix would become Disney XD on July 3, 2009.[9] The last series premiering on the channel were Monster Buster Club and Quantum Ray. The promos of Disney XD showed different subjects of the new channel (like guitars, skates, video games or even shoes) appearing in front of the Jetix character on its own city.

United Kingdom and IrelandEdit

A one-hour timeshift of Disney XD is also available. Disney XD +1 is available on Sky, Virgin Media, and TalkTalk TV in the UK and in the Republic of Ireland on Sky and Magnet Networks.

Beach Soccer was a joint initiative between England Beach Soccer and Disney XD, holding Beach Soccer Roadshows across the UK.[10] An artificial beach was built in each of the five locations, and beach soccer tournaments were held in Southampton, Nottingham, Minehead and Stockport, culminating in a beach soccer final in Oxford Street, London on Saturday August 29, 2009. Leading the programme was the England National Beach Soccer squad themselves, who were on hand to teach skills and drills and oversee the day’s coaching sessions.

British skateboarder Pete King skated his way across the UK to help get kids out and skateboarding as part of the launch of Disney XD.[11] From Land’s End to John O’Groats, Pete King kick-flipped and tail-slided through the UK executing daredevil tricks whilst conducting master classes for kids looking to become the next British skateboarding stars. King’s challenge was part of a series of challenges which Disney XD set for UK personalities to help inspire kids to try new activities. Viewers were able to watch the highlights of King’s journey on Disney XD in October 2009. Also, two shows have been premiered in the UK before the US, called Football Funnies and Goalmouth

FranceEdit

The channel is available in France, Monaco, Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, Switzerland, Denmark, Madagascar, Réunion, Mauritius and Caribbean Sea (Antilles, French Guiana, Guadeloupe, Martinique). The old address of the Jetix website (www.jetixtv.fr) now redirects to the Disney XD website.

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Disney Launches Disney XD Network, Web Site, Orlando Business Journal, February 13, 2009
  2. ^ Disney XD Looks Good in Debut, TV Week, February 14, 2009
  3. ^ Chmielewski, Dawn C. (August 7, 2008). "Disney to Target Boys with Rebranded Cable Channel". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2008-08-08.
  4. ^ Lafayette, Jon (August 7, 2008). "Toon Disney Rebrands as Disney XD, Shifts Focus to Boys". TV Week. Retrieved 2008-08-08.
  5. ^ http://www.chicagotribune.com/entertainment/sns-201201091659reedbusivarietynvr1118048312jan09,0,2763814.story
  6. ^ http://www.comicbookresources.com/?page=article&id=36327
  7. ^ "ASTRAL LAUNCHES DISNEY XD JUNE 1, 2011 – KIDS' SPECIALTY CHANNEL AND MULTI-PLATFORM BRAND TO DEBUT ACROSS CANADA". CNW. 2011-03-11.
  8. ^ http://disneyxdmedianet.com
  9. ^ Exclusivo ANMTV: Disney XD ya tiene fecha de estreno – Anime, Manga y TV. Anmtvla.com. Retrieved on 2011-04-09].
  10. ^ Disney channel launches beach soccer campaign – The Marketer magazine. Themarketer.co.uk (2009-05-25). Retrieved on 2011-04-09.
  11. ^ Pete King skates across the UK for the Disney XD Challenge // Skateboarding Videos. Video.mpora.com. Retrieved on 2011-04-09.