Disney Shifts Pixar’s ‘Turning Red’ to Disney+ in Latest Blow to Theaters
(Bloomberg) -- Walt Disney Co. has moved another Pixar animated film to streaming only amid a surge of coronavirus cases.
“Turning Red” will now premiere exclusively March 11 on Disney+, the company said Friday. It was originally scheduled to appear in theaters that day. In international markets where Disney+ isn’t available, the movie will be released theatrically, with dates yet to be announced.
Soaring omicron cases threaten to dampen what Hollywood has hoped would be a comeback year. Even as the theater industry celebrates the huge triumph of “Spider-Man: No Way Home” -- a blockbuster that has amassed more than $1.3 billion in ticket sales in less than a month -- other films have struggled to draw moviegoers, including movies aimed at children.
“Given the delayed box office recovery, particularly for family films, flexibility remains at the core of our distribution decisions,” Kareem Daniel, chairman of Disney Media & Entertainment Distribution, said in a statement.
While the move is another blow for theaters trying to recover from shutdowns and movie postponements, there is a benefit for Disney, which is trying to ramp subscribers to its streaming service, a big part of its future growth. The company previously released the Pixar films “Soul” and “Luca” on Disney+ exclusively.
“Turning Red” is about an Asian teenager who turns into a giant red panda.
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