In what could be called a growing trend, Disney announced it would release its upcoming film, Raya and the Last Dragon, on March 5, 2021, in both theaters and on Disney+. But, much like Mulan, you’ll have to pay extra to stream it from home on launch day.
The plans are similar to the recent Warner Bros. announcement to release all movies in 2021 in theaters and HBO Max on the same day. With the ongoing pandemic, people are still reticent to go to theaters, so having a choice to watch from home is a welcome change.
While Disney did choose to release some movies without charge to its streaming service, like Soul and Onward, not every film gets that treatment. When bypassed theaters and went straight to Disney+, subscribers had to either pay $30 to see it right away or wait until December.
Welcome to the Kingdom of Kumandra. Raya and the Last Dragon is coming to theaters and on #DisneyPlus with Premier Access on March 5, 2021. #DisneyRaya pic.twitter.com/tF94qRTo0E
— Disney (@Disney) December 10, 2020
Raya and the Last Dragon will get a similar “premier access” treatment, though Disney declined to say what it would charge for early access. The movie itself looks interesting. It takes place in a fantasy world named Kumandra, and dragons are all but extinct. They sacrificed themselves 500 years ago to protect humans from invading monsters called the Druun.
But now the Druun are back, and it’s up to Raya to find the last dragon and save everyone. But given that it’s Disney, it’s likely we’ll see a few plot twists along the way and a lot of life-learning lessons. Raya and the Last Dragon hits theaters and Disney+ on March 5, 2021.