by Wolf Richter
Are multiplex theaters even viable in the era of streaming and affordable big screen TVs, if studios crush the “theatrical window?”
Disney will release “Raya and the Last Dragon” this Friday in 2,000 theaters and simultaneously on its streaming service Disney+ for an additional $29.99 fee, on top of the monthly subscription fee. In September last year, Disney released “Mulan” directly on Disney+ for $29.99. In December, it released its Pixar animated movie, “Soul,” on Disney+ instead of in theaters. The entire family or a group of friends can watch those flicks when they premier, for $30, on a big screen in their living rooms. Any efforts by a studio to pull this off before the Pandemic would have caused all movie theater chains to boycott the release.