waltz disney (SAY) – Get The Walt Disney Company Report and Pixar Studio’s animated film “Soul” will be released directly to the Disney+ streaming service this Christmas, the entertainment giant tweeted.
The animated comedy, featuring the voices of Jamie Foxx and Tina Fey, will be free to Disney+ subscribers.
While “Soul” will appear exclusively on Disney+ in the United States and Europe, it will be released in theaters in countries where the streaming service is not available, Bloomberg reported.
Disney has already gone the direct-streaming route several times this year, including the much-hyped release of “Hamilton” on July 3.
Last month, Disney postponed the release of the Marvel movie “Black Widow” to next spring from November.
Earlier this week, Cineworld Group’s Regal Entertainment Holdings announced it would be temporarily suspending operations at all of its US and UK cinemas.
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The move came as crucial sales of expected autumn and winter blockbuster film releases like the upcoming James Bond epic have been postponed by the coronavirus pandemic.
In contrast, AMC Entertainment (CMA) – Get AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. Class A Report. said Thursday it would open 520 of its 600 locations by mid-October.
The coronavirus outbreak has forced theaters to shut down dues to comply with social distancing and quarantine requirements. These rules were enacted to slow the spread of the potentially deadly disease.
Major multiplex chains in the United States reopened last month at reduced capacity and with health protocols in place. Some markets, including New York and Los Angeles, remain closed.
In August, Disney announced that it would release its live-action drama “Mulan” on Disney+ on September 4.
The film was also released in theaters around the world with lower-than-expected receipts due to rising political tensions between Beijing and Washington as well as coronavirus-induced lockdowns.
Disney shares rose 1% to $124.33 at last check.