A recent report from Deadline revealed that Disney+ is set to remove a number of original titles from the service as part of the studio's new cost-cutting efforts, with the company hoping to make big moves in search of profitability.
Bryan Cranston Reacts to Disney+ Purge
Actor Bryan Cranston took to Instagram to share his reaction to the recently-announced purge of projects from Disney+, which included one of his own movies - The One And Only Ivan.
Based on the 2012 children's novel of the same name, the 2020 film told the real-life story of Ivan the gorilla, who starred as the main attraction at a circus mall as he and his animal co-stars live in captivity. The One And Only Ivan also features Sam Rockwell, Angelina Jolie, and Helen Mirren as voices for other animals, and Cranston plays the main human character as the circus owner and ringmaster.
Initially set for a theatrical release, the movie eventually found its way onto Disney+ for an August 2020 release during the pandemic, and it even received an Academy Award nomination for its visual effects.
Cranston expressed his pride in the movie and reminisced on how it was "released after the COVID Lockdown began," urging fans to watch his work and dive into the real events on which it was inspired:
"I heard the news that my film, 'The One And Only Ivan' is being pulled from Disney+ as early as next week. I was very proud of this sweet, family movie that was released after the COVID Lockdown began. And I urge you to gather your kids, or nieces & nephews, make some popcorn, and watch this engaging and delightful story that was based on real events!"
He also thanked Disney for the chance to make the movie while promising that viewers will enjoy it when they see it "before it disappears forever:"
"The real life guy that I play actually adopted a baby gorilla (Ivan) and raised him in a Washington state suburb. A crazy true story!! Thanks to Disney for giving us the opportunity to make this movie in the first place. I just know that it will make for really great family time - but you have to do it this weekend before it disappears forever. I promise, you’ll be glad you saw it. Have a great weekend… Bryan."
Will Disney+ Reconsider Purge Strategy?
Even for all of the content that Disney produces for theaters and exclusively for Disney+, the company has a bottom line that they look to meet as new projects are released.
While names like MCU and Star Wars hold the streaming service up financially, fans and creatives have their own expectations for what Disney+ holds for entertainment options outside of the top pop culture franchises.
For the most part, it appears that Marvel and Star Wars content will be safe from getting dropped. But that leaves movies like the one Bryan Cranston made in question, especially considering how heated the battle is between streaming services like Disney+, Hulu, and Amazon Prime these days.
The real question for Disney to consider now is how much the studio will actually profit from removing titles like this one, whether it's for tax breaks or for some other unknown reason.
And as this purge becomes official in the coming weeks, many will look to see if Disney has any plans for another removal spree, even with the company getting back to bringing big hits to theaters at the same time.