The Coronavirus continues to greatly impact the film industry, including its most profitable studio Disney. Along with pay cuts that have impacted several of its executives, the company has delayed most of their 2020 film slate, including blockbusters like Mulan, Black Widow, and The Eternals. They have also begun to utilize their streaming platform Disney Plus as a means of releasing delayed projects, with the company announcing that Artemis Fowl will forgo its theatrical run for a streaming release. According to Disney executive Bob Iger, that move could be the start of many.
In an interview with Barrons, Bob Iger revealed that Disney will release “a few more” of their delayed projects on Disney Plus, which leads many to think that the long-delayed New Mutants could be heading to streaming. Here’s Iger’s full take on the issue:
“There are some we’ve decided to put on Disney+. We already announced one, ‘Artemis Fowl,’ that would have been released in theaters. Others we’ve simply delayed. In some cases we’ve moved things onto Disney+ faster than we would have. ‘Frozen 2’ was one of them, but ‘Onward’ would be the biggest example. It was in theaters when this happened. We moved to a pay-per-view period for a couple of weeks where people could buy it and own it. And then we ended up putting it on Disney.”
Disney’s shift in strategy makes a lot of sense for a multitude of reasons. Releasing a big-name title on their streaming platform is a great way of marketing the service, as exclusives are ultimately what sells streaming services to audiences. New Mutants would be a great splash for the streaming platform, as there is still significant fan interest for the project despite its delays. A Disney Plus release would also help clear up the film calendar, as dozens of projects have been stockpiled onto the same dates due to the Coronavirus.
Would you rather see New Mutants as a streaming release or in theaters? Let us know in the comments!