Sound of Freedom Streaming: Did Netflix Turn Down the Movie?

By Sam Hargrave Updated:
Sound of Freedom, Netflix background

Did Netflix actually pass on the controversial Sound of Freedom? Here's the truth.

Sound of Freedom proved to be a surprise box office hit of the summer, breaking major box office records and even taking down Hollywood superhero blockbusters.

The movie tells the story of U.S. agent Tim Ballard's Operation Underground Railroad, an anti-sex trafficking organization. Sound of Freedom became controversial for allegedly painting a sensationalized picture of child trafficking as well as for the political ties of its filmmakers.

Did Netflix Actually Pass on Sound of Freedom?

Sound of Freedom still
Angel Studios

A viral tweet from Matt Wallace with 4.7 million views and 81,600 likes claimed "Netflix and Amazon Prime JUST TURNED DOWN" the streaming rights to Sound of Freedom, claiming the services were looking to cover up alleged pedophilia in Hollywood. 

The issue became particularly divisive as Netflix hosts the 2020 French movie Cuties which was massively controversial due to its sexually suggestive scenes involving child actors and characters.

In an interview with Washington Examiner published in July alongside the movie's release, producer Eduardo Verástegui revealed the filmmakers struggled to find a distributor for years between its conception in 2015, filming in 2018, and eventual deal and release with Angel Studios in 2023.

The producer confirmed both Netflix and Amazon passed on Sound of Freedom due to fear of losing money, obviously as few were expecting it to turn into viral sensation and box office hit that it eventually would. 

The controversial flick was originally conceived in 2015, with filming taking place in 2018 and a deal later conceived for 20th Century to distribute the movie. But when Disney acquired Fox, Sound of Freedom was shelved before the filmmakers bought back the rights and shopped it to Angel Studios this year.

Talking to Breitbart, Verástegui explained when he showed the movie to Disney they decided it was "not from [them]," leading him to shop to other outlets and go “knocking on doors with Netflix, Amazon, and other studios.”

So, while both Netflix and Amazon did pass on Sound of Freedom, it was seemingly more of a financial decision, while the parting with Disney's 20th Century came to a lack of interest in distributing the movie.

When Will Sound of Freedom Start Streaming?

According to recent reports, Sound of Freedom is expected to bypass Angel Studios' own streaming service and instead sell to a major subscription service in an eight-figure deal akin to that usually reserved for major blockbusters. 

As Disney already passed up on Sound of Freedom, both Disney+ and Hulu are almost certainly off the table. Since Eduardo Verástegui confirmed Amazon and Netflix passed on the movie in 2018, they may be less likely targets, but since their fears were due to losing money, that may no longer be an issue.

Angel Studios' biblic show The Chosen currently airs on NBCUniversal's Peacock, so that may be the most likely streaming target for Sound of Freedom. But given the movie's surprise popularity, there are bound to be a number of major services getting involved in the potential bidding war over the coming months.

So, for now, Amazon, Netflix, Max, Apple TV+, and Peacock are all strong candidates for Sound of Freedom to land on streaming, with the latter perhaps having the most justification behind it.

Sound of Freedom will reportedly arrive for digital purchase on September 15.

- About The Author: Sam Hargrave
Sam Hargrave is the Associate Editor at The Direct. He joined the team as a gaming writer in 2020 before later expanding into writing for all areas of The Direct and taking on further responsibilities such as editorial tasks and image creation.