This weekend, one of 2017's best movies illegally hit the internet. Thor: Ragnarok, the third Marvel Studios film to hit in 2017, has been available in an array of high-quality formats on a number of torrent-sharing sites. I know what you're saying: "khal, you dumb old MF, damn near ANY movies are available on the internet for free." I get it, trust me, but what makes this interesting is that the latest Thor tale was out damn near a month before its digital release on Feb. 19, which is practically unheard of for these kinds of films.
Usually, either someone shadily rips a DVD screener that someone with a SAG card has (which is how a number of AWARDS SZN films have hit the internet prematurely), or someone who works at a big box retailer or a spot that sells DVD and Blu-Ray discs finesses a copy and rips it for distribution closer to the actual release date. So how the fuck are high-quality rips of Thor: Ragnarok available for anyone who knows how to download a torrent so early? It looks like an honest mistake.
According to TorrentFreak, it might be an issue on Apple's end. Essentially, if users of Vudu (which allows you to stream and download movies you've purchased legally over the internet) a) pre-ordered Thor: Ragnarok's digital release and b) had Vudu connected to their iTunes account, the movie ended up sitting in their iTunes, in full glory, to watch right then as opposed to a month later. This was also reportedly occurring with people who use the service Movies Anywhere (which allows you to stream purchased movies on an array of digital devices), although in both instances, it appears that the user's Vudu and iTunes accounts were linked.
"I obviously downloaded it right away," said one user on Reddit. "I know its supposed to come out February 20th."
As of now, there's no official word on how the film became available that early for pre-order customers, but with a little less than a month before the digital release of Thor: Ragnarok and a whole month for the physical copies to drop (Feb. 26), this will no doubt put a massive dent in whatever money Marvel was anticipating they'd be making off of the best Thor film in the franchise.