Will Disney’s PVOD scheme blow up movie theaters?

Imagination Connoisseur, Desmond, writes in with some questions about Disney’s plan to present MULAN on Disney+ at a premium, on-demand price. If it works, what changes are in store for Disney+ and what affect will this have on traditional movie theaters?

Hi Toyman,

Thanks as usual for your work.

Do you think the PVOD $30 Disney model may add the following;

  • An additional pre-movie before the actual movie like a small budget movie like in the pay per view fights (pre fights before main event)?
  • Up the price of their Disney plus subscription to cover the costs of their yearly movie calender budget?
  • The $30 PVOD offering is mainly to test to see if they can make back their money for all the current properties they’ve invested over $200 million?

If they did that, would they then, moving forward, adjust the production budgets to fit the streaming subscription model? Given the social situation with many people not being able to make an income consistently they would have to be wise not to raise prices too high to build it into subscriptions and to have one viewings payments.

The future of cinemas

If studios cut out theaters that would seem to allow the shift of budgets/profits that would have gone to the theaters to get moved more towards digital advertising on ad networks (Yahoo Gemini, Google Ads, YouTube Ads, Criteo or other online publishers for media buys) as to promote their own properties.

On a nice Star Trek point

I came across a YouTube channel from Alexander Siddig (called the Sid City Social Club) you and the team may enjoy.

It has NEW Dr Bashir and Garak DS9 dialogues/stories being acted out on video conferencing which is reflective of the current pandemic. At present they have created 4 episodes, with additional actors coming in also (Quark, Jake and Kira). The relationship and discussions between Garak and Bashir are as compelling and as strong as if the show had not been off air in my opinion.

Enjoy.

Thanks for your perspectives,

– Desmond

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