Disney+ Just Removed a Major 2023 Movie It Spent $50M to Make

By Savannah Sanders Posted:
Disney plus movies and television

Disney's ongoing purge of streaming content continues with one of the latest casualties being a new multi-million dollar film.

In the wake of Disney's second-quarter earnings report, a number of movies, shows, and other projects have been removed from Disney+

Cutting content to cut costs has become the norm within the streaming world with platforms such as Max, Netflix, and Hulu doing the same

However, this particular Disney+ original made huge waves given its budget and shockingly short shelf life. 

Disney+ Deletes New $50 Million Dollar Movie

Crater, Disney

Crater, a sci-fi adventure film featuring a young ensemble cast, has been removed from Disney+ a mere 48 days after its May 12, 2023 release.   

The original Disney+ film starring Isaiah Russell-Bailey, Captain Marvel actress Mckenna Grace, Billy Barratt, Orson Hong, Thomas Boyce, and Scott Mescudi reportedly cost $53.4 million to make. 

The film also received generally positive reviews upon its debut. 

While Disney has yet to confirm why Crater was scrubbed from Disney+, its low performance coupled with its $50 million plus price tag may have led the company to press delete to save on licensing costs. 

According to Variety, Disney scrubbing content from Disney+ allows the company to take a write-down ranging from $1.5 billion to $1.8 billion.

This is a huge step towards Disney CEO Bob Iger's plan to achieve $3 billion in savings for 2023, a strategic response to the company's previous efforts to churn out as much content as possible to generate subscriber growth. 

Unfortunately, Crater just happens to be amongst the latest victims of Disney's latest round of streaming cleaning. 

The following is a list of the other projects Disney removed on June 30:

  • More Than Robots
  • Alaska Daily
  • The Company You Keep
  • Recep İvedik 7
  • King Shakir Recycle
  • Ben Gri
  • Runaway
  • Dunyayla Benim Aramda (Between The World And Us)
  • New Year’s Eve
  • The Nightingale of Bursa
  • My Apologies

What Crater Says About the State of Streaming

If Crater's removal tells audiences anything, it's that streaming is still far from stable. 

Following the streaming boom amidst the pandemic and in expectation of the death of theaters, studios are now having to reevaluate and reposition while also navigating the unpredictable 2023 box office

At the moment, it's still too early in this new medium's history to know what the future holds. However, what creators and talent know now is that direct-to-streaming projects - including those with $50 million dollar price tags - are disposal. 

Unlike theatrical films or direct-to-video releases, straight-to-streaming projects without a physical release can disappear from existence at the whim of the studio's budget. 

For writers, directors, artists, and other talent, including those who worked on Crater, that's not only terrifying but reality. 

As studios continue to struggle to tame the streaming machine, it's important to note that the costs aren't just on a studio balance sheet. 

They're also the number of movies, television shows, and documentaries that countless people contributed to and which are no longer accessible and may never be seen again. 

- About The Author: Savannah Sanders
Savannah Sanders joined The Direct as a writer in 2020. In addition to writing for The Direct's Star Wars, Marvel, and DC teams, Savannah specializes in the relationship between Disney's blockbuster franchises and the Disney Parks.