This has not been a good year for the movie industry. The global pandemic shuttered movie theaters not only in the United States but around the world, and for months has forced film production companies like Walt Disney Studios to shut down work on numerous upcoming movies and television series. Because of this delay, movie release dates were pushed back. Some dates, including the one for Marvel’s Black Widow prequel, reportedly still haven’t been solidified.
But now, movie theater chains have begun to reopen, and studios like Disney are left with a decision: continue 2020 theatrical releases as scheduled or send movies straight to streaming platforms instead?
Disney has already sent several movies originally intended for theatrical release straight to Disney+. The One and Only Ivan and Magic Camp both premiered with full access for all subscribers. Mulan was released to the streaming platform via a new $29.99 Premier Access tier.
Now, rumors are swirling that Disney and Pixar are also considering sending Pixar’s Soul to Disney+ instead of to theaters. With Warner Brothers highly-anticipated Christopher Nolan thriller Tenet recording dismal box office numbers, it makes sense that Disney is reassessing their strategy for Soul, which is currently scheduled for a November 20 debut.
Disney and Pixar could also repeat the strategy used for its previous feature film, Onward which experienced a short theatrical run, followed by an early digital release and then an expedient release on Disney+.
Disney’s official description of Soul reads:
What is it that makes you…YOU? This November, Pixar Animation Studios’ all-new feature film “Soul” introduces Joe Gardner (voice of Jamie Foxx) – a middle-school band teacher who gets the chance of a lifetime to play at the best jazz club in town. But one small misstep takes him from the streets of New York City to The Great Before – a fantastical place where new souls get their personalities, quirks and interests before they go to Earth. Determined to return to his life, Joe teams up with a precocious soul, 22 (voice of Tina Fey), who has never understood the appeal of the human experience. As Joe desperately tries to show 22 what’s great about living, he may just discover the answers to some of life’s most important questions. Directed by Academy Award® winner Pete Docter (“Inside Out,” “Up”), co-directed by Kemp Powers (“One Night in Miami”) and produced by Academy Award nominee Dana Murray, p.g.a. (Pixar short “Lou”), Disney and Pixar’s “Soul” opens in U.S. theaters on November 20, 2020.
Watch the full trailer for Disney-Pixar’s Soul below:
Would you like to see Soul release directly to Disney+?