Gelato, oceanside views, and a pair of fish-out-of-water best friends: Those are some of the main ingredients of Pixar’s latest film Luca, a nice little departure from the studio’s last existential, soul-searching film. But like Soul, Enrico Casarosa’s film is bypassing theaters to premiere straight on Disney+. You don’t even need to pay an extra fee for Luca! If that has you scratching your head saying, “Wait, no Disney+ Premier Access?”, we have all the answers to how to stream Pixar’s summer adventure here.
When is Luca arriving on Disney+?
Originally scheduled for a theatrical-only release, Luca was shifted to a Disney+ premiere in response to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. The film comes out on June 18, 2021.
Wait, so will Luca be in theaters?
While other Disney films like Cruella and Raya and the Last Dragon have had a simultaneous in-theater and Disney+ Premier Access release, Luca — like Pixar’s Soul before it — will be a Disney+ exclusive. So, in short, no, it won’t be in theaters — though if you live in Los Angeles, Luca will have a limited weeklong run at Disney’s El Capitan Theatre. Synergy, am I right!
Huh, weird. How do Pixar people feel about this?
You’re right, it is weird. There’s no official, on-the-record rhyme or reason to Disney’s release schedule, but it’s very strange for both Pixar films to not get a theatrical and a Disney+ Premier Access release. There have been reports and well-sourced anecdotes that claim Pixar employees are miffed by Disney’s decisions on this front, which is, uh, intriguing. But we digress!
So, do I only need Disney+ to watch Luca, or do I also need to do the Disney+ Premier Access thing?
Luca is not a Disney+ Premier Access title, so there will be no extra charge aside from the price of a Disney+ subscription.
If I don’t have Disney+, how much is a subscription?
It is a $6.99 monthly fee for the streaming service.
If I just want to watch Luca, could I just get a free trial?
Wouldn’t you like that to be a possibility. Unfortunately, Disney+ does not offer a free trial.
How long will you have to watch Luca?
Since Luca is categorized as a Disney+ original and not a Disney+ Premier Access title, it will be available in the streaming-service library for as long as Disney keeps it there.
What if I want to own Luca on digital?
Well, for now, you’re out of luck. But since Luca was originally a theatrical title, it will likely be available on digital platforms like iTunes and Google Play soon. Pixar’s Soul, which also became a Disney+ Original, hit digital platforms around three months after its Disney+ premiere and even got a physical-media release, too.
Will more current Disney theatrical titles pivot to Disney+?
As of now, it seems like Luca is the last film to go through the “theatrical-only to Disney+ Original” pipeline. Upcoming Disney movies like Black Widow and Jungle Cruise are taking the in-theaters and Disney+ Premier Access route, while Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings and Free Guy, coming later in the year, are currently set to release in theaters only. It seems as we’re cautiously coming out of the woods (re: the coronavirus pandemic), the constant shifting of movies will be few and far between.
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