Following in the footsteps of Artemis Fowl and the live-action Mulan remake—but not in the immediately depressing way that all the words in that previous sentence might suggest—Disney has just announced that Pixar’s next animated film, the intriguing-looking after/before-life comedy Soul, will be skipping theaters this winter, instead making its exclusive debut on the company’s Disney+ streaming service. The release of the film—which stars Jamie Foxx as a music teacher who gets his soul knocked out of his body and has to find his way back to it—is being posited as a bit of a Christmas gift from the giant, all-consuming media company: The film will debut on Disney+ on December 25.
Originally scheduled for a November 20 theatrical release, Soul was also selected for Cannes this year, before the whole “global pandemic” thing sent that plan spiraling off a cliff. And really, even for Pixar, there’s a pretty embarrassing amount of talent attached to this thing; not just Foxx, Tina Fey, Questlove, Angela Bassett, and more doing voices, but also direction from Inside Out’s Pete Docter, a screenplay co-written by One Night In Miami…’s Kemp Powers, and a score from recent Emmy winners Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross. (Plus jazz music from Jon Batiste.)
Soul is set to make its world premiere this weekend, at the BFI London Film Festival. It’ll arrive in the U.S. on Disney+ on December 25th, 2020, with international dates (in countries where theaters are open) to follow at a later time.