A few days ago a press release slid into my inbox that got me very excited. What did that press release say? It announced the release of Rogue One coming to digital followed by a physical release. While I’ve been buying digital films more often these days for films I just want to see but not own, there are always films that I will always want the physical release (and the digital code it comes with is nice as well) for my collection.
So first let me throw out part of what that press release said:
Announced today on The Star Wars Show and StarWars.com, “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” will be coming home on Digital HD on March 24th and Blu-ray on April 4th. This news comes on the heels of the start of production announcement of the untitled Han Solo Star Wars Story. “Rogue One” has established its place within the Star Wars universe and the hearts of moviegoers, becoming the seventh highest-grossing film of all time in the U.S.
Arriving early on Digital HD and Disney Movies Anywhere on March 24, and on Blu-ray™ Combo Pack, DVD and On-Demand on April 4, the release includes never-before-seen “Rogue One” bonus material that will take fans behind the scenes with the movie’s diverse, dynamic cast and inspired team of filmmakers. An intimate collection of stories reveals how the film came to life, as well as hidden Easter Eggs and film facts that audiences may have missed in the theater.
The Blu-ray, according to the press release, is coming out April 4th. Joy! I mosey on over to Amazon and what do I find?
Currently unavailable. No way to pre-order it…it’s just “unavailable.” It made no sense to me that a film that is coming out in less than a month is not available for pre-order. I can pre-order anything else. Why can’t I pre-order Rogue One? As an Amazon Prime member I enjoy ordering from Amazon because I get the two day free shipping, they are very efficient, and…well…they rock.
So I thought to myself…can you pre-order it at Walmart?
At Best Buy?
The answer to all three questions is yes. At Target it is offered just a bit cheaper and if you buy something else and get to over $25 you get some free shipping.
So what’s the deal? Why does the biggest retailer in the world not have the biggest movie of last year available? I tried Googling my answer and came up with nothing. Nada. Zippo. No answers. When I went onto Facebook and did some searching based on keywords I had a bit more success in finding an answer.
Disney and Amazon squabbling? A standoff? A dispute? How factual is it all? I decided to look up both Moana and Dr. Strange Blu-rays to see about the price and availability.
Both Blu-rays are set at a very reasonable price of $22.99. Both are also ‘Temporarily Out of Stock.’ Is it the pricing? Is Amazon pricing these films too low for Disney’s taste and therefore not giving them the product? I decided to go back to Target and see how much higher or lower their prices are when compared to Amazon.
I was QUITE SURPRISED to find out that both Disney Blu-rays are in stock and selling for $22.99 – the same exact price point as Amazon. For shits and giggles I decided to look up some other non-Disney upcoming films to see how their prices compared from Amazon to Target.
Pre-orders for both Sing and Passengers are the same price: $19.99. Matter of fact Target offers even cooler exclusive stuff that the Amazon guys don’t have.
I’m sure there is a smart business reason that I am not privy to on why Disney is not stocking things at Amazon. Could it be because Disney has an exclusive now with Netflix and therefore doesn’t want to sell their Blu-rays to Amazon because of their Amazon Prime? No…I think that is actually a stupid thought. You can actually pre-order the digital copy of Rogue One at Amazon. You just can’t pre-order the Blu-ray or DVD. The same goes for Dr. Strange and Moana. No availability on the Blu-ray and the DVD.
As I continued to search I couldn’t find anything. I tweeted at Amazon but, no surprise, they failed to tweet on back to me. Obviously the problem is not the price. Maybe Amazon WANTS to sell it cheaper and there in lies the problem. Maybe the price points that are up on Amazon right now are just for show. Maybe what they wanted to sell Moana for was $18.99 and that made Disney sad.
I just don’t know. I’m not a great detective. And both companies really aren’t telling us what is going on. All I know is that on April 4th I’m not going to arrive home and find an Amazon package containing Rogue One waiting for me. I like Target. I am NOT a Best Buy fan (the employees at the one near me are just awful). Will I have to just pre-order it from Target? I’m thinking so.
I just wish I had an answer on why Amazon and Disney are fighting. You guys should be friends. BFFs. Don’t take it out on us loyal customers…we just want to watch Jyn Erso’s plight against the Empire.