Mulan was the most-watched film over the weekend…by a lot.
Last weekend was an odd showdown. On one end, you had Tenet. It was released by Warner Bros. and was a mind-bending thriller from the mind of Christopher Nolan. As one would expect, it was set to hit theaters, even in the midst of a pandemic. But audiences had a choice. They could also fork over $30 — in addition to the cost of a Disney+ subscription — for Disney’s Mulan. We know that Tenet made $20 million opening weekend, but what about Mulan?
Well, it’s near-impossible to get specific figures. Given that Disney has complete control of their ecosystem, only they have access to the specific numbers. However, there are some great alternative ways to gauge success, including the stats from our friends over at Reelgood. Their streaming service search engine has over two million users, and using their data, they were able to reveal just how big Mulan’s stream share had over the weekend.
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According to their data, Mulan was the most-watched film among their users, taking 14.95% of the share of streams for the weekend. And this wasn’t just among PVOD films. This was among all films streaming period, including the ones on Netflix that don’t require a $30 premium. The closest competitor was Charlie Kaufman’s I’m Thinking of Ending Things, which streams on Netflix.
Check out the full chart below!
But that wasn’t all. The presence of Mulan also led to a staggering 68% spike in app downloads, research firm Sensor Tower told Yahoo! Finance. Clearly, the movie was big enough to warrant users into action. But users didn’t just download, they also spent money. They report a spike of 193% of consumer spending in the app — which I guess isn’t crazy since the film cost $30.
One thing to note is that while Hamilton led to a much higher jump in downloads (79%), it’s worth noting it’s because that film was free and didn’t require a premium.
While this all sounds well and good, it’s still impossible to tell what this means. Is this a success for Disney and can it possibly make up for all the money they would have made in theaters? It’ll be much harder for us to know that, and the only real indication will be whether or not Disney continues this strategy going forward.
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“I think one of the difficulties going forward is going to be how we set the metrics for success,” Mulan co-producer Jason Reed told the outlet. “I’m used to: Monday morning, you open the trades, $100 million opening, and everybody knows you won… We’re not going to have that. We’re not going to know how many new subscribers there were, we’re not going to know how many views there were. And there’s a lot of differing metrics inside the streaming universe: full views, partial views, multiple views, all of those kinds of things, which we haven’t standardized as an industry yet.”
So…we’ll see. If nothing else, it does look like the film ultimately did drive traffic to the app. And, who knows, maybe new subscribers will take advantage of The Mandalorian for the first time, prompting them to stick around for another couple of months as Season 2 rolls out. The benefits to Disney are not yet clear and are admittedly muckier to wade through than simple ticket sales.
Did you cough up $30 for the premium Disney film? Are you surprised Mulan was the most-watched film last weekend? Let us know your thoughts down below!
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SOURCE: Reelgood, Yahoo! Finance