Ryan Reynolds and Will Ferrell’s upcoming holiday film Spirited — a musical retelling of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol — will open in select theaters on Nov. 11 before making its global debut on Apple TV+ Nov. 18 ahead of Thanksgiving.
Apple Original Films announced its release plans for the high-profile movie on Friday. It’s not yet clear how many cinemas Spirited will play in, since many exhibitors aren’t keen to carry a film that’s hitting the home so quickly now that the box office is recovering from the pandemic.
For its part — much like its rivals — Apple Original Films’ main focus is making compelling content for its streaming service, versus waging a full-fledged theatrical run that requires a major marketing spend.
Streamers generally don’t report theatrical grosses. A traditional Hollywood event pic will open in 3,000 to 4,000 screens, while an event title from a streamer will often play in no more than 400 to 500 locations.
The family friendly Spirited could serve as counterprogramming of sorts to Marvel and Disney’s superhero sequel Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, which opens on the big screen Nov. 11.
Octavia Spencer also stars in Spirited. Reynolds plays the iconic character Ebeneezer Scrooge and Ferrell, the Ghost of Christmas Present. Sean Anders (Daddy’s Home, Instant Family) directed the movie from a script he wrote with John Morris. Patrick Page, Sunita Mani, Loren Woods, Joe Tippett, Marlow Barkley and Jen Tullock round out the cast.
Producers are Anders, John Morris, Reynolds, George Dewey, Ferrell, Jessica Albaum and David Koplan.
Apple TV+ is available in over 100 countries and regions.