The Disney+ streaming platform debuted on November 12, 2019. Since then, Disney has expanded the service into numerous nations around the world, bringing Disney magic directly into consumers’ homes in a brand new way.
Throughout the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, when movie theaters worldwide were closed, The Walt Disney Company opted to send many projects straight to Disney+, including Scarlett Johansson’s solo Marvel Cinematic Universe movie, Black Widow (2021).
Now, however, many of the company’s latest films — such as Encanto (2021), Spider-Man: No Way Home (2021), Doctor Strange In the Multiverse of Madness (2022), and Lightyear (2022) — are returning to theaters.
This has made Disney’s decision to pull upcoming release, Strange World, from French theaters seem odd. Per The Hollywood Reporter, both movie fans and theater owners in France are livid about the “anti-consumer” move:
Disney’s decision to drop a French theatrical release for Strange World and put Don Hall’s animated action-adventure movie directly onto its streaming platform Disney+ in the territory has French exhibitors up in arms.
France’s National Cinema Federation (FNCF) protested the move on Wednesday, calling it “a losing choice for everyone” that would “seriously undermine the economy of cinemas and the sector as a whole.”
The article noted that Strange World was originally slate to hit French theaters on November 17, 2022, but Disney has pulled the debut “citing the country’s strict windowing regulations, which require a 17-month period between a film’s theatrical release and its debut on a streaming platform in France.”
At this time, despite heavy criticism, it does not seem that Disney will relent on its decision to send Strange World straight to the Disney+ streaming platform in France.
Disney has described Strange World as:
Jake Gyllenhaal (The Guilty, Spider-Man: Far from Home) lends his voice to Searcher Clade, the son of a steadfast explorer. The original action-adventure journeys deep into an uncharted and treacherous land where fantastical creatures await the legendary Clades, a family of explorers whose differences threaten to topple their latest—and by far— most crucial mission.
You can watch the official teaser trailer for the next Disney animated movie below:
More on Disney+
Disney+ is the streaming home of nearly all of Disney’s subsidiaries, including Walt Disney Animation Studios, Marvel Studios, Lucasfilm/Star Wars, and Pixar Animation Studios.
Since it debuted in 2019, notably, an entire catalog of Star Wars and MCU movies, including the nine-film Skywalker Saga and the entire Avengers Infinity Saga, have been added to the popular platform, which has exceeded all subscriber expectations.
The Mandalorian — which introduced Grogu (AKA “Baby Yoda”) and bounty hunter Din Djarin (Pedro Pascal) to the Star Wars universe — quickly skyrocketed up the charts as the cornerstone of the Disney+ service.
Both the Marvel Cinematic Universe and Star Wars have released numerous Disney+ Original series in addition to their feature films. Star Wars, for instance, has given fans two seasons of The Mandalorian, two animated series — Star Wars: Visions and Dave Filoni’s Star Wars: The Bad Batch — and, now, Mandalorian spinoff The Book of Boba Fett.
Another live-action installment, Obi-Wan Kenobi — starring prequel trilogy actors Ewan McGregor and Hayden Christensen — dropped first two episodes on May 27, 2022.
Marvel President Kevin Feige’s team has also been hard at work, putting out five series — WandaVision, The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, Loki, What If…?, and Hawkeye — in 2021 alone. A six-episode season of Moon Knight kicked off the MCU’s 2022 slate, which also includes Ms. Marvel and She-Hulk.
What do you think about Disney coming under fire for skipping Strange World‘s theatrical release in France?