Disney has confirmed that 17 MCU titles are set to receive IMAX-quality audio on Disney+ later this year.
This new feature is the result of Disney Streaming and Imax and Xperi's DTS audio-tech subsidiary and promises to be "specially calibrated" for home-theater systems.
This upgrade is also part of an effort to guarantee that “filmmakers’ creative intent is fully optimized for an Imax-quality presentation.”
Here are the following MCU titles set to receive this upgrade:
- Black Panther: Wakanda Forever (arriving on Disney+ on February 1)
- Thor: Love and Thunder
- Doctor Strange
- Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness
- Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings
- Black Widow
- Guardians of the Galaxy
- Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
- Iron Man
- Captain America: Civil War
- Thor: Ragnarok
- Black Panther
- Avengers: Infinity War
- Ant-Man and the Wasp
- Captain Marvel
- Avengers: Endgame
Pixar's Lightyear is also expected to receive this feature as well.
Devices that will support this Disney+ IMAX upgrade include IMAX Enhanced-certified TVs from Sony and Hisense and certified AV receivers from Denon, Marantz, and JBL.
While the IMAX experience was once exclusive to theaters, Disney+ has been actively bringing the format to consumers' homes in recent years, particularly in terms of its MCU titles.
In November 2021, 13 Marvel Studios films in their original IMAX ratio were dropped on the streamer, including Black Panther and Avengers: Endgame.
Now it appears that Disney isn't just adding to that list in 2023, but upgrading the experience even more with IMAX-level sound.
A Win for MCU Fans & Directors?
With Disney+ offering the IMAX format and IMAX sound, the only thing missing for fans at home is the IMAX screen.
Since that latter feature is often the main reason why audiences flock to theaters in the first place, this upgrade shouldn't be a blow to cinemas or the theatrical experience.
It will, however, up Disney+'s prestige in the eyes of consumers and possibly with directors as well.
Filmmakers have long lamented the disconnect between the theatrical experience and that of home viewing as sound, visuals, and ratios don't always translate.
The fact that part of this effort on the streaming service is to preserve directorial creative decisions is a huge win for filmmakers, especially those whose films have - and will in the future - fall under the Disney banner.
As to why MCU titles are receiving this upgrade as opposed to others, again, many Marvel Studios films are already been available on Disney+ in the IMAX format.
Also, IMAX and Marvel Studios have been working together for more than a decade and the MCU has become the highest-grossing franchise in the format's history.
This new feature will be available on Disney+ sometime in 2023.