Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment saw an opening and took it. Sometimes it’s hard for a mega-studio to react to market conditions, but kudos to Disney for the move they made with director David Lowery's remake of Pete's Dragon.
The studio got out early with a Dec. 6 street date for director Steven Spielberg’s The BFG and we fully expected them to let Pete’s Dragon finish out the last of its theatrical run and then get marching orders for the same early December street-date Tuesday. But along came Universal Pictures about ten days ago and did a double-thumping of The BFG with news that both The Secret Life of Pets and Jason Bourne would be available as DVD, Blu-ray and 4K Ultra HD product offerings on Dec. 6.
Tossing Pete’s Dragon into that mix would have been pure folly; an “oh well” after thought … a total surrender.
Instead, Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment took one look at the release calendar and saw that no one else had a major theatrical release scheduled for the home entertainment market place on Nov. 29. Sure, there were Kubo and the Two Strings, War Dogs and Hell or High Water all scheduled for release on Nov. 22, but nothing for the following week. Boom! Pete and his magical friend found a home!
On Nov. 29 there will be a stand-alone DVD edition and Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack, but in keeping with Disney’s steadfast refusal to join the 4K Ultra HD movement, there will be no 4K Ultra HD SKU for this CGI marvel.
The ARR works out to 109 days and domestic ticket sales were right at $75 million.
Bonus features include commentary from film editor-turned-director David Lowery, who is joined by writer Toby Halbrooks and the film’s stars, Oakes Fegley as Pete and Oona Laurence as his sidekick, Natalie, plus there is a blooper reel and a pair of music videos — The Lumineers’ haunting, “Nobody Knows” and Lindsey Stirling teams with Andrew McMahon for “Something Wild.”
Additionally, there is a video diary from filmmaker David Lowery titled “Notes to Self: A Director’s Diary” and three featurettes — “Making Magic,” “Disappearing Moments” and “Welcome to New Zealand.”