Disney finally pulled the trigger on sending Mulan to Disney+, but not in the way that many predicted. Rather than just dumping the film on the streamer like they did with Artemis Fowl or The One and Only Ivan, the studio knows that Mulan is a premium title, so they announced that the film will cost $29.99 for Disney+ subscribers. So you first need to be a Disney+ subscriber to have the chance to get Mulan. But what happens once you pay that thirty bucks?
We now have some more clarification:
UPDATE: For those wondering if Mulan is a $30 rental, a Disney spokesperson told me that “the fee provides ongoing access to the film as long as they remain Disney+ subscribers.” https://t.co/EPXQTkhJnh
— Frank Pallotta (@frankpallotta) August 5, 2020
Basically, you’re paying $30 to add Mulan to your Disney+ library. That’s not a terrible deal when you consider that for a family of four, the cost of seeing Mulan in theaters would probably cost $40 plus concessions plus the lackluster presentation that major theater chains provide. What’s more impressive is rather than the film being a one-shot rental like other Premium VOD titles, you can now watch Mulan as much as you want as long as you’re a Disney+ subscriber, and considering that Disney+’s subscriber base has exploded over the past months, it’s unlikely that people will get Mulan and simply bail afterwards.
So it’s a savvy move to for upping Disney+’s subscriber base and kind of a necessary evil of unloading a valuable title when theatrical distribution doesn’t seem to be returning any time soon to the U.S. The question now becomes if Disney will continue to do this throughout the pandemic and beyond. It’s easy to see a scenario where we’re all still muddling through the pandemic and Disney decided to release Black Widow over Thanksgiving. But right now, it’s clear they’re taking this one film at a time, and it will be interesting to see how much attention Mulan gets over Labor Day weekend when it’s on streaming.