'My Little Pony' Movie Heading Straight To Netflix Instead Of Playing In Theaters

Heads up, bronies: the latest My Little Pony movie is no longer coming to theaters in the United States.

The animated family film was once slated to hit theaters on September 24, 2021, but it will now debut on Netflix instead. It's unclear if the film will begin streaming on that same date, but the assumption is that it will still arrive on Netflix at some point this year. It sounds like the only country in which fans will still be able to see this movie in theaters as originally intended is China.

Variety reports that Hasbro's entertainment studio Entertainment One, which produced the new My Little Pony movie, has sold the rights to Netflix everywhere except China, where eOne will retain distribution rights.

My Little Pony began as a toy line and has since spun out into a full-fledged media franchise, with multiple animated series, direct-to-video movies, and even a theatrical feature called My Little Pony: The Movie that was released in 2017.

Weirdly, though, there are practically zero details about this new movie anywhere online. Variety says the new film is directed by Robb Cullen, Jose Ucha, and Mark Fattibene, with Cecil Kramer and Peter Lewis serving as producers. But the project is not listed on any of their IMDb pages, and Lewis doesn't even have an IMDb page. The film is not mentioned on Wikipedia, which seems especially odd for a franchise with such a huge fan base. Does this movie actually exist, or are we all caught in an elaborate Argo scenario in which the United States is trying to trick a foreign government into thinking this film is happening so we can pull off some sort of international espionage? The answer seems obvious to me, but you can draw your own conclusions.

Paramount Pictures was originally supposed to distribute this new movie theatrically in the U.S., which continues a long trend of Paramount projects that were once slated for theaters being shuffled off to streaming platforms instead. That trend began long before the pandemic threw the industry into upheaval – perhaps the most notable example came in 2017 with The Cloverfield Paradox, which had its theatrical release scrapped in favor of a surprise Netflix debut after the Super Bowl that year. At the time, people assumed it was just the case of a studio trying to get rid of a shitty movie and make a buck in the process. But then Paramount sold off the international rights to Annihilation (a great movie) to Netflix the next year, and since then, the studio has sold Aaron Sorkin's The Trial of the Chicago 7 to Netflix and the Eddie Murphy-led Coming 2 America and Michael B. Jordan-fronted Without Remorse to Amazon Prime Video.