Disney's Mulan, which was supposed to be one of the studio's biggest releases this year, will skip a theatrical release and hit Disney+ on September 4. However, viewers will have to pay $29 for the Chinese epic, according to Variety. Bob Chapek, Disney's chief executive, said that this would be a special case and that fans shouldn't assume that this would be the studio's M.O. moving forward.
The $29 is in addition to Disney+'s usual subscription fee, which rings up at $6.99 for most viewers. Variety adds that in countries that don't have access to Disney+, Mulan will have a theatrical release.
"We’re looking at Mulan as a one-off as opposed to say there’s some new business windowing model that we’re looking at," Chapek said during Disney's earnings call today.
Vulture reports that Mulan is the "first major tentpole movie to bypass North American theaters and head straight to streaming." Whether or not this move is an indication of how movie releases will move forward at other studios still remains to be seen.
Chapek added that Disney intends to "learn from it and see the actual number of transactions." In addition to Mulan, the studio has pushed back other releases, such as Marvel's Black Widow and Pixar's Soul. Disney also released Hamilton early on Disney+, even though it had a planned theatrical release of October 2021.
Mulan was originally scheduled to hit theaters on March 27 and was delayed multiple times (July 24 and August 21 were options) before Disney removed it entirely from its release schedule. Disney's original animated Mulan premiered in 1998 and would go on to become the second-highest-grossing family film that year, behind Disney's A Bug's Life.
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