Disney opts for digital-first release of Mulan, shocking cinema owners

Mulan is first blockbuster to go straight to streaming in response to Covid-19 shuttering cinemas

Disney’s decision to bypass cinemas and offer its latest big budget film Mulan directly to streaming subscribers for $29.99 could signal the beginning of the end for the traditional movie-going experience – and forever change the long-established business model underpinning the Hollywood blockbuster.

The surprise move has stunned cinema owners, who had been banking on the film, along with Christopher Nolan’s sci-fi thriller Tenet, to jump-start box office takings as theatre chains struggle to recover from the coronavirus pandemic.

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