Mulan is finally landing on Disney Plus September 4, but be ready to pay a lot extra for...

Cal Jeffrey

Posts: 2,517   +571
Staff member
WTF?! How much would you pay for a video rental? Three dollars? Six? What if it was the best movie ever made? Would you pay more? Ten dollars, maybe? What about $30? Well, if you want to watch Disney's big-budget live-action adaptation of Mulan, that's what you'll have to fork over.

During a Tuesday earnings call, Disney execs said that they finally nailed down a release date for the long-delayed Mulan film. The movie will air on the company's streaming service, Disney Plus, starting on September 4, but that wasn't even the most surprising news.

Apparently, to watch Mulan, viewers will have to cough up $30. This fee is on top of the $7 per month subscription to Disney Plus. According to CEO Bob Chapek, the $30 charge is treated more like a "purchase." He insists that it is not a rental fee. The one-time payment gives subscribers "continuous access to the film," so long as they maintain their subscription.

"We see this as an opportunity to bring this incredible film to a broad audience currently unable to go to movie theaters, while also further enhancing the value and attractiveness of the Disney Plus subscription with this great content," said Disney's top dog.

This "as-long-as-you-are-a-subscriber" stipulation flies in the face of a typical video "purchase" where you can keep the movie after buying it without paying anything further. To me, it sounds more like a continuous rental with a hefty upfront flat fee attached.

It also seems a bit steep for recouping box office earnings. The average adult theater ticket averages around $10. Granted, some users have multiple people in the household, but for a standard single user, $30 is quite off-putting.

It's hard to tell if the Mouse is using Mulan as a test case for a radical new business model. In the Q&A portion of the call, Chapek said that Mulan is a one-time deal and that Disney Plus is not pursuing a paid-video-on-demand (PVOD) business model. However, later he implied that it very much is a test case for PVOD.

"We find it very interesting to be able to take a new offering to consumers at that $29.99 price and learn from it and see what happens not only in terms of the uptick of the number of subscribers we got on the platform but also the number of transactions we get on that PVOD offering," explained Chapek.

If I were to wager a bet, I would have to say that Disney will likely throw this idea out the window after Mulan. I simply cannot see many people willing to throw $30 down on what essentially amounts to a video rental, especially during this economic recession. Judging by some of the responses on Twitter (above), I'm not alone in that thinking.

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mctommy

Posts: 347   +82
HAHAHA, I foresee a lot of people dusting off their pirate hats lol
Or they never quit in the first place. I think there are more lament people that will be shelling out the money for this than you think especially in a pandemic world where you can stay in the comfort of your own home and watch this as a family for $30 instead of going to the movie theater and pay $10-20/ticket.
 

candle_86

Posts: 514   +382
Or they never quit in the first place. I think there are more lament people that will be shelling out the money for this than you think especially in a pandemic world where you can stay in the comfort of your own home and watch this as a family for $30 instead of going to the movie theater and pay $10-20/ticket.
Nah I'll tell my kid we already own the animated version enjoy
 

grvalderrama

Posts: 268   +93
Imagine paying 30 bucks for every big budget Netflix movie... that's an awful lot of money and Disney should be fine for just thinking about this new way to charge users.
 

texasrattler

Posts: 969   +423
Wont ppl just use there firesticks? Lets be honest, thats what its used for. When you cant go out or do much anything outside, money is alrdy tight, I highly doubt ppl will be spending $30 for a movie ontop of $7 service fee.
They should have just left the movie delayed till 2021 but greed as usual wins out. Companies never learn, will be the downside to the human race.
 

Evernessince

Posts: 5,332   +5,790
"The one-time payment gives subscribers "continuous access to the film," so long as they maintain their subscription."

1) Why not offer a one time viewing option?

2) It sounds like they loose access to the film if they let their sub lapse.

I'm not sure if this is just stupid or greedy. Perhaps a bit of both.
 
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Edster

Posts: 41   +30
This is ridiculous.

As much as I sympathize with Disney regarding the cost of making such a big film, I am not paying 30 dollars for a film. Not when is just in my house with a okay TV with an ok sound system.
 

Lew Zealand

Posts: 1,558   +1,556
TechSpot Elite
This is a good movie to test how far you can squeeze money out of people. Everyone already knows the story, but it's definitely a second tier Disney one in terms of popularity. So if they lose $ by charging too much then no big deal, just charge $20 or $25 for their more popular ones in the future. But if it actually makes a decent amount of $ or at least exceeds expectations, then consider it a successful test for the studio and we'll see more of this $30 crap in the future.
 
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Irata

Posts: 800   +1,122
TechSpot Elite
"The one-time payment gives subscribers "continuous access to the film," so long as they maintain their subscription."

1) Why not offer a one time viewing option?

2) It sounds like they loose access to the film if they let their sub lapse.

I'm not sure if this is just stupid or greedy. Perhaps a bit of both.
Yep, this. So you „purchase“ the movie for $30 but unless you continue to pay your monthly subscription fee, the movie is gone. How is that a purchase ?

This must be the worst combination of rental / subscription and purchase I have ever seen.

If Disney thinks that this is a good way to achieve customer lock in....
 

Irata

Posts: 800   +1,122
TechSpot Elite
Usenet, torrents etc and probably will go down as the most pirated movie in 2020

Cue up Radarr :D
Is it that good though ? I have no idea tbh but it‘s not really on my radar at all. The animated version was fine to watch, but that‘s about it. With the strong woke filters on movies lately, I am beginning to care less and less.
 

Jroc187

Posts: 49   +30
"The one-time payment gives subscribers "continuous access to the film," so long as they maintain their subscription."

1) Why not offer a one time viewing option?

2) It sounds like they loose access to the film if they let their sub lapse.

I'm not sure if this is just stupid or greedy. Perhaps a bit of both.
it seems stupid because it's new and you seem not to have kids. So for you, this looks expensive. But for mom and dad who would have to load up the car and buy 4 or more movie tickets at $15 each or whatever they cost plus snacks, this works out great. But the choices are yours, buy-in early for $30 or weight and get in a few months for the monthly fee. This is capitalism the consumer will tell Disney what works best for them by voting with there dollars.
 

kira setsu

Posts: 285   +219
HAHAHA, I foresee a lot of people dusting off their pirate hats lol
Nah, its a known movie, a big title, with people locked in their houses it'll sell like hotcakes cause compared to the theatre that 30 smackers is actually cheap, plus its something new.

far as pirates they'll be the normal people who already pirate everything so they shouldnt even be mentioned, those folks arent loss sales, at worst theyre sales that were never gonna happen anyway or at best they'll actually be free advertisements for the movie if its decent and they start chatter about it.
 

Linoleum77

Posts: 32   +12
Good God... No one has kids here? I have 4 kids and I will gladly pay that $30 hands down compared to paying $150 for tickets, pop-corn and have to do line-ups!! You guys are probably just not the intended target.