Disney delivered a pretty big surprise recently when it was revealed that Mulan will be released on Disney+ in the U.S. and other countries next month. But not just as part of the streaming package subscribers are paying for. The highly-anticipated blockbusters will set customers back an additional $30. However, unlike other recent premium VOD offerings, it has been confirmed that those who shell out for the movie will get to stream it for as long as they are subscribed to the service.
A Disney representative has confirmed, since the initial announcement was made during a quarterly earnings call, that those who pay for Mulan "will have continuous access to the film for as long as they remain subscribers to the service." This is different from what Universal Pictures did with Trolls World Tour, for example. The premium VOD model, which has emerged in recent months as theaters have been closed around the world, allows people to rent new movies from the comfort of home for roughly $20. It was expected that this would be the case with Mulan as well.
This makes the $30 price point seem a bit more reasonable. Though it is still not quite the same as owning the movie on Blu-ray, or even a digital copy. It is contingent upon keeping Disney+. That equates to roughly $6.99 per month, depending on one's subscription plan. But, as Disney CEO Bob Chapek explained during the announcement, these are unpredictable times. They call for new strategies.
"In order to meet the needs of consumers during this unpredictable period, we thought it was important to find alternative ways to bring this exceptional family-friendly film to them in a timely manner."
Mulan will be available in the U.S., Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and a number of countries in Western Europe. The big catch is that Disney is still planning to give the movie a theatrical release in certain countries where Disney+ is not available, or where movie theaters are operating safely. Originally, director Niki Caro's $200 million live-action remake of the beloved 90s animated classic was set to be one of the studio's major theatrical releases for the year. It stars Yifei Liu, Donnie Yen, Jason Scott Lee, Yoson An, Gong Li and Jet Li.
The other important thing to note is that the studio has said this will be a "one-off." That means those who are hoping they will do the same for Black Widow, which is currently set to hit theaters in November, shouldn't get their hopes up. Be that as it may, it is a signal that the industry is being forced to change rapidly and dramatically as a result of the situation at hand. While box office will surely remain a big part of the equation in the future, Pandora's Box has been opened. We can't expect reasonably that it will be easy to close once this is all over. Mulan will be available on Disney+ starting September 4. This news comes to us via Insider.