Earlier today, Disney revealed that their upcoming slate of film releases has been substantially tinkered with. The big news from their announcement is that Black Widow is going to be available not just in theaters, but on Disney+ through an added fee, much like with Mulan. Disney is also doing the same with Cruella, while some of their other moves include release date changes for Deep Water, Luca, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, and more. It all shows that, while theatrical showings will be coming back, no one is ready to full on embrace that model. So, the hybrid model remains, at least for now.
Here’s some of the report from Variety:
As moviegoing slowly begins to rebound in the U.S., it appears Hollywood studios aren’t yet ready to release their biggest blockbuster hopefuls on the big screen.
All that is to say Disney has massively overhauled its upcoming slate and amended release plans for “Black Widow,” Emma Stone’s “Cruella,” “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings,” Pixar’s “Luca” and several others.
Notably, “Black Widow” and “Cruella” will now premiere on Disney Plus at the same time they open in theaters. “Cruella” is arriving as scheduled on May 28, while “Black Widow” has been pushed back two months and will debut on July 9 instead of May 7. Both titles will be offered on Premier Access, which comes with a $30 rental fee.
“Black Widow’s” move means that Marvel’s “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings,” which was previously set for early July, was bumped back to Sept. 3. It’s expected to have a traditional theatrical release.
Meanwhile, Pixar’s animated coming-of-age adventure “Luca” won’t play in theaters and instead is launching exclusively on Disney Plus, at no extra cost, on June 18.
Despite the massive refocus on streaming, Disney doesn’t plan to entirely ditch theaters. Numerous smaller titles, mostly those inherited from 20th Century, have been postponed but will bow solely on the big screen, including “Free Guy” (Aug. 13), “The King’s Man”(Dec. 22), “Deep Water” (Jan. 14, 2022) and “Death on the Nile” (Feb. 11, 2022).
Stay tuned for more…