So you open up Disney+ on a Friday night and see the latest movie from the “House of Mouse” on the banner, but after clicking you notice it requires Premier Access. What exactly is that, you wonder. Also, why does it cost extra?
How Disney+ Premier Access got started
I’m glad you asked. Back in 2020, during the COVID-19 pandemic, theaters all across the country shut down and many of us were trapped at home. Something I’m sure you’re all well aware of. During that time, people needed something to do such as watching movies, and studios had a backlog of titles they couldn’t release.
This lead to some of them experimenting by releasing new movies via video-on-demand options, oftentimes at a higher price and for limited time viewing. It didn’t take long before Disney wanted to get in on the action as well with its streaming platform, and so was born Disney+ Premier Access.
However, instead of offering a one-time rental or selling the movie outright, Disney went a different way. The media titan decided that it would offer access to its latest movies for a one-time payment but only to Disney+ subscribers.
It started with Mulan, followed by Raya and the Last Dragon. Soon, we’ll see Cruella and Black Widow join the ranks as well. In fact, Cruella is currently available for pre-order on Disney+ with a release date of May 28, 2021. Black Widow cannot be pre-ordered at the moment, but it will release on July 9, 2021, and you can expect pre-orders to open up in the weeks leading up to the premiere date.
How much does it cost?
While having access to brand-new theater-quality movies during the pandemic was a godsend for many of us, it didn’t come cheap. Currently, Disney+ charges $29.99 on top of the $8 per month subscription fee for each movie you order using Premier Access.
That means you’d pay $29.99 for Cruella and another $29.99 for the upcoming Black Widow movie in addition to the monthly subscription fees. For many families, that’s cheaper than a night out at the movies, but it can be a little pricey for single folks.
The good news is, after that one-time payment, you can enjoy the movie as many times as you like, provided you stay subscribed to Disney+. That beats a lot of the other offers where you had a limited time to view after ordering, but it also comes at a higher price tag and requires you to stay an active subscriber to Disney+.
Be patient and you can save some money
One of the best parts about Disney+ Premier Access is that you don’t need to pay for it to see those newly released movies. That’s right, you can put your wallet away and within a few months, the titles typically join the Disney+ collection, where they can be watched with your normal subscription.
For example, Cruella joins Premier Access on May 28, 2021, whereas on August 27, 2021 it will be available for all Disney+ subscribers.
Premier Access simply gives you the benefit of watching the movies the first day it is released on Disney+ or in theaters. If you don’t mind waiting, then you can watch the same movie after a few months and save some money. Of course, you’re going to have to avoid spoilers until then, and good luck with that.