Disney sends ‘Frozen 2’ to streaming for housebound families

The movie will begin to stream months earlier than expected

The Walt Disney Co. will release “Frozen 2” on Disney Plus several months early to give families cooped up by the coronavirus a welcome distraction — and give its streaming service a boost.

Disney announced Friday that “Frozen 2” will begin streaming on Disney Plus Sunday, three months earlier than expected. In some countries, including Canada, Australia, New Zealand and the Netherlands, the movie will start streaming Tuesday.

Most upcoming new releases have been postponed due to the virus, including Disney’s own lineup. “Mulan” had been set to hit theatres next week. Few March or April movies remain on the calendar. Some movie theatres have shuttered, though most are currently imposing new restrictions on audience crowding to help facilitate the social distancing recommended by health officials.

The move by Disney could presage how other media companies funnel their films to streaming services in the coming weeks as studios look for ways to capitalize on audiences stuck at home. And it could prove a pivotal moment in the evolution of streaming services in relation to theatrical release. The major studios have largely guarded the traditional three-month exclusive theatrical window.

“Frozen 2,” which opened on Nov. 22, had already completed its theatrical run and hit video-on-demand on Feb. 25. With more than $1.4 billion in worldwide ticket sales, its the highest grossing animated film ever.

The vast majority of people recover from the new virus. According to the World Health Organization, people with mild illness recover in about two weeks, while those with more severe illness may take three to six weeks to recover.

___

The Associated Press receives support for health and science coverage from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute’s Department of Science Education. The AP is solely responsible for all content.

Jake Coyle, The Associated Press

Coronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Social media a blessing and a curse during time of crisis: B.C. communication expert

‘In moments of crisis, fear is very real and palpable,’ says SFU’s Peter Chow-White

Interior Health officials outline pandemic response in virtual town hall

Kelowna-Lake County MLA Norm Letnick moderates digital discussion, Q&A with Interior Health leadership

B.C. COVID-19 contact restrictions working, Dr. Bonnie Henry says

’Not out of the woods yet’ as next two weeks are critical

Interior Health issues alert following confirmed COVID-19 case on WestJet flight

The public exposure alert comes following the March 21 WestJet flight from Calgary to Kamloops

Some big city shoppers heading to small towns to stock up

With the cupboard bare in many large centres, shoppers are flocking to places like Ashcroft

B.C. is seeing the highest rate of COVID-19 recovery in Canada, and there’s a few reasons why

British Columbia was one of the first to see rise in COVID-19 cases, and has also switched up testing

No plans to call in military right now to enforce COVID-19 quarantine: Trudeau

Trudeau unveils $7.5M for Kids Help Phone, $9M for vulnerable seniors amid COVID-19

Sewers stitch masks to free up supplies for front-line health-care workers

“We have little old ladies sewing up a storm,” said Joan Davis

Experts weigh in on best handling of groceries during COVID-19 pandemic

Study suggests the virus can live for up to 24 hours on cardboard and up to three days on plastic

‘There is community’: B.C. councillor welcomes new baby into world amid COVID-19 pandemic

‘I realize there’s much more than fear and worry… there is hope, there is new life’: Jason Lum

COVID-19 world update: Enforceable quarantine in NYC?; France orders 1 billion masks

Spain warns EU’s future at stake; New York governor calls Trump’s idea ‘federal declaration of war

‘Community is amazing’: Williams Lake woman organizes drive-by birthdays

With self-isolation the norm due to COVID-19 children are missing out

Earth Hour 2020 kicks off online Saturday night

Action moves online due to COVID-19

B.C. COVID-19 cases rise 92 to 884, one more death, 81 in care

Outbreak action underway in 12 long-term care homes

Most Read