That’s right, we’re finally creeping up on the release date for Dwayne Johnson’s next feature film. It’s been far too long since we’ve been able to say that. The actor, who is always working, has had some movies being held back by the studios waiting for a proper post-lockdown release. Now, Disney has decided to release Jungle Cruise on July 30, 2021, in both theaters and on Disney+ for streaming with Premier Access.
If you haven’t yet used the Premier Access feature on Disney+, you’re not alone. This is a new option and somewhat unique to this streaming service. To watch the new Dwayne Johnson movie on Disney+ on July 30th, you’ll need to have a Disney+ subscription and then pay an additional $30 one-time fee to Premier Access for the movie. This gives you access to stream a movie that is currently playing in theaters. The streamer started this service option with the release of Mulan in September of 2020. If you wait a few months, Jungle Cruise will eventually be part of the regular Disney+ catalog, but if you want to see it when it releases, you’ll need to pay the additional Premier Access fee.
How will this affect how the box office numbers are judged for Jungle Cruise? The world of simultaneous streaming and movie theater releasing is still far too new. At this point, box offices are just starting to liven up again. Emily Blunt is Dwayne Johnson’s co-star in Jungle Cruise. She just broke pandemic box office records with the release of A Quiet Place 2, which broke $100 million at the box office. Those are the kinds of numbers that were projected for that particular movie before the pandemic happened. But Jungle Cruise? What can we expect?
There is definitely a board room full of Disney executives somewhere arguing over this right now. Over Memorial Day weekend, they saw the release of Cruella. That movie is a 101 Dalmatians spinoff, starring Emma Stone, telling the story of the villain that skins dogs in her early years. It also released both on streaming with Premier Access on Disney+ and in theaters. Based on what Samba TV has been able to discern, the movie did better than Mulan. It probably hasn’t done as well as it would have before the pandemic, but that’s only speculation. Expectations for Dwayne Johnson’s Jungle Cruise are likely much higher.
What makes Jungle Cruise so special? For one thing, it took the model used by Pirates of the Caribbean. Meaning, Jungle Cruise is a film based on a ride at Disney parks that doesn’t currently have a story behind it, just the same way Pirates of the Caribbean did. That Johnny Depp movie wasn’t actually expected to do well at the time, but it did exceptionally well and became a notable franchise for Disney.
This time around, they’re going in big with Jungle Cruise. They have Dwayne Johnson and Emily Blunt, who are big stars with a lot of box office power behind then. Johnson, in particular, raises the stakes. Jungle Cruise is a family movie, likely with a similar audience to what he drew in for Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle. That movie earned just shy of a billion at the box office, with $962 million. Moreover, he has a history of starring in movies reaching numbers at those box office heights.
If you haven’t yet seen one of the trailers for the upcoming Dwayne Johnson movie, they’re worth a watch.
The resemblance to Pirates of the Caribbean is clear. It’s a family-friendly adventure story where unlikely and quirky things happen. The characters are a little goofy. Somehow, they got Dwayne Johnson to wear suspenders and this hat. Is there anything more precious? The actor has done a good job in family-friendly movies over the years of playing the more goofy and fun characters. That has been an unexpected part of his brand, countering his roles in action films, and something audiences particularly love him for.
Emily Blunt’s A Quiet Place 2 managed to break post-pandemic lockdown records when it broke $100 million domestic at the box office. Will the pair manage to do much better than that? Will Jungle Cruise be the first big blockbuster of the summer to pass $500 million? Because it seems likely that Disney was expecting something more in that wheelhouse when they took on this Dwayne Johnson project. And how will Premier Access on Disney+ affect the box office numbers, and how the success of Jungle Cruise will be judged in the industry? We don’t have long to wait now. We’ll be able to watch Jungle Cruise either online or in theaters on July 30, 2021.