Pixar movie ‘Soul’ to open on Disney+ instead of theaters

It’s the latest blow for the theatrical exhibition industry, which has been lamenting the lack of hot-ticket movies to bring in audiences.

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Film Review - Soul 12/1/2020 Film-AFI Top 10 12/1/2020 soul.jpg 12/29/2019 7:48:51 PM STEVE JOBS CANCER 9/10/2002 1:58:25 PM This image released by Disney-Pixar shows the character Joe Gardner, voiced by Jamie Foxx, in a scene from the animated film “Soul,” named one of the top 10 films of the year by The American Film Institute. (Disney Pixar via AP) ORG XMIT: NYET151

A middle-school band teacher (voice of Jamie Foxx) is at the center of “Soul.”

Disney/Pixar

The big-screen release has been canceled for another of the year’s most anticipated movies.

The Pixar animated film “Soul,” originally scheduled to open in theaters on Nov. 20, instead will debut on the Disney+ streaming service on Dec. 25, Disney announced Thursday.

It’s the latest blow for the theatrical exhibition industry, which has been lamenting the lack of hot-ticket movies to bring in audiences wary of gathering as the COVID-19 pandemic rages on.

There was no indication that Disney+ subscribers will have to pay extra to see “Soul” as they did for “Mulan,” another major Disney release whose theatrical ambitions were scuttled by the coronavirus.

“Soul” will play in theaters only in parts of the world where Disney+ is not yet available.

Jamie Foxx and Tina Fey lead the voice cast for “Soul,” from “Inside Out” and “Up” director Pete Docter. It had been scheduled for a June release, then was postponed until the weekend before Thanksgiving in the hope that the virus would have been contained.

Last week the new James Bond film “No Time to Die,” which also had been scheduled for Nov. 20, was postponed until April 2021.

“With over 60 million subscribers within the first year of launch, the Disney+ platform is an ideal destination for families and fans to enjoy a marquee Pixar film in their own homes like never before,” Disney said in its announcement.

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