It really was not long ago that we were watching the trailer for Disney’s upcoming animated adventure Raya And The Last Dragon. But a lot can happen in six weeks, including a Disney investor call meant to assure those writing the checks that they are sinking their money into something that can withstand an unending pandemic. That means we can expect a few changes to the company’s release schedule, including the animated Kelly Marie Tran starrer.
During the investor call, which took place on Thursday afternoon, Disney announced that it would be premiering Raya And The Last Dragon on the premium tier of Disney+ the same day the movie is due to hit theaters. This is a fairly expected development, as major titles like Mulan and Pixar’s Soul also ended up with streaming premieres (though the latter will not debut with an additional cost, but rather on the regular platform on Christmas Day). Like Mulan, Raya will be available with Disney+’s Premium Access program; however, it is not clear if the movie will be released at the same $29.99 price point as its live-action predecessor.
Disney is following the ever-changing release model of its competitors like WarnerMedia, which recently announced plans to release all of its major 2021 titles on HBO Max alongside their respective theater releases. It all speaks to the cloud of uncertainty that surrounds the industry as the pandemic continues. That said, an interesting report from The New York Times also noted that Disney still plans to keep titles like Black Widow—which is currently set to debut in theaters May 7—as a theatrical release only.
Raya And The Last Dragon, which will debut on Disney+ and in theaters March 12, stars Tran as a young warrior who is on the search for the last living shapeshifting dragon. Awkwafina also stars in the film with Don Hall and Carlos Lopez Estrada billed as co-directors of the screenplay from Crazy Rich Asians writer Adele Lim.