Onward to stream on Disney+ less than 1 month after its theatrical release

Brendan Morrow

Yet another very recent theatrical release will be available to watch at home months early due to the coronavirus pandemic, with Disney being the latest to join in.

Disney announced Friday its newest Pixar film Onward will be available for digital download tonight, just two weeks after its debut in U.S. theaters on March 6. Movies aren't typically available to watch at home for about three full months after they open theatrically, but studios this week have started rolling out their recent films on demand early as theaters close around the country.

In addition to making Onward available for digital download, Disney also announced the film will stream on Disney+ beginning in two weeks, on April 3. This is another big break from typical release patterns, as Disney usually doesn't debut its movies on Disney+ until much longer after their initial at-home release. For comparison, Toy Story 4 only arrived on Disney+ in February after hitting theaters in June.

Universal earlier this week got the early digital release trend started when it announced its recent films including The Invisible Man and The Hunt would soon be available for home viewing. Those movies became available on Friday for a $19.99 rental, which lasts 48 hours. Other films set to get an early digital release next week include Birds of Prey and The Way Back.

Previously, Disney released Frozen II on Disney+ months early because of the coronavirus pandemic and also moved Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker's digital release up several days.



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