Check out our Podcast Breakdown | Black Widow on Disney+
Even thought the end of the COVID-19 pandemic is within sight, Disney’s theatrical division is now making its latest (and hopefully last) release schedule shake-up. The Walt Disney Company announced several films, including the hotly anticipated Marvel Studios flick Black Widow, will officially make the move to Disney+ Premier Access.
The shift comes after over a year of delays for the MCU’s Phase 4 kickoff. Even with COVID-19 vaccine distribution ahead of schedule, Disney finally decided that an exclusive theatrical release is not yet safe for audiences to enjoy this summer. Black Widow’s new release date, July 9, 2021, will be its final shift.
Black Widow leads a list of other hotly anticipated Disney tentpole films that were either shifted back, moved to Disney+, or both. Here is a complete list of the Disney movies affected by the latest announcement:
- Black Widow – Moved back to July 9 | Theaters and Disney+ Premier Access
- Cruella – Staying on May 28 | Theaters and Disney+ Premier Access
- Pixar’s Luca – Staying on June 18 | Disney+ Exclusive (Free to Subscribers)
- Shang-Chi and The Legend of the Ten Rings – Moved back to September 3 | Theaters Only
- Free Guy – Moved back to August 13 | Theaters Only
- The King’s Man – Moved back to December 22 | Theaters Only
- Deep Water – Moved back to January 14, 2022 | Theaters Only
- Death on the Nile – Moved back to February 11, 2022 | Theaters Only
Disney+ Premier Access is a controversial business model for the company. Subscribers of the service are given the option to pay an additional $29.99 on top of their subscription fee for early access to major blockbuster films. Disney previously used the model to launch Mulan and Raya and the Last Dragon, both to unknown success because Disney chose not to release its internal data.
While this is only pure speculation, it can be assumed that neither film did particularly well with the Premier Access model because Disney is not bragging about the numbers, and the Blu-Ray release of Raya and the Last Dragon was pushed up to only two months after its Disney+ debut. However, Black Widow is probably the only film that can truly test the model because of its Marvel affiliation and mega-blockbuster status.
How do you feel about the move to Disney+? Will you check it out in theaters or at home? Let us know on Twitter @Filmnetic and down in the comments below.