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‘Hamilton’s’ Disney Plus Premiere Expedited Because Streamer Needs Content, Analyst Says

Stephanie Sengwe

Disney+ sent the internet into a frenzy on Tuesday when they announced that the hit Broadway musical, “Hamilton,” will be coming to the streaming service July 3 — 15 months earlier than originally planned. The film, directed by Thomas Kail, was originally slated for October 2021, but Disney decided to cut its theatrical run entirely and will be bringing it to the streamer in time for Independence Day celebrations.

Though it seems Disney is simply following the pattern of early releases that has been trending among mega studios due to the coronavirus pandemic, analysts say that the streaming service “needs product” to churn out. “This is a commercial film but not a blockbuster film, something they had hoped for a theatrical slot and are pulling back simply because they need to put something into that Disney+ pipeline,” LightShed media analyst Rich Greenfield told The Hollywood Reporter.

With NBCUniversal currently embattled with AMC over their decision to cut theatrical windows short, it’s to be expected that theater execs would be equally ruffled by Disney’s decision to bring “Hamilton” to the digital platform so early. However, the response towards Disney has been different because their move is more out of necessity than it is a reflection of their long-term output plan, according to THR.

Disney execs have also affirmed that high-profile blockbusters such as the live-action remake of “Mulan” and the Scarlett Johansson-helmed “Black Widow” would get theatrical premieres.

Filmed at the Richard Rodgers Theatre on Broadway in June of 2016, “Hamilton,” was written by Lin-Manuel Miranda, who also produced the show along with Jeffrey Seller and Thomas Kail. In addition to 11 Tony Awards, the musical has also garnered a Grammy Award, Olivier Award and Pulitzer Prize.

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