FINDING DORY will be the first time that Disney releases a first-run theatrical film with its own capabilities to help blind and low-vision people enjoy the experience. The technology uses a smart-syncing audio description system that was first introduced four months ago for home-use on the Disney Movies Anywhere (DMA) app.


REVIEW: Triumphant FINDING DORY helps Pixar find themselves again

Movie-goers will simply need to access their DMA app on their tablet or mobile device and plug in with headphones to get rich description of relevant on-screen visuals and action. The mobile device’s microphone will “listen” to the big-screen presentation and syncs the audio descriptions accordingly so users can hear both the descriptive narrative and the film’s original audio.

For now, it seems the audio accessibility settings in the the DMA app are only available for iPhone or iPad devices running iOS 7 or above.

More than 21 million people in the United States are blind or visually impaired. While all feature films include a track for the blindness community, until now, these tracks have been accessible only by utilizing special gear provided by a limited number of individual theaters. Now this access is opened up for people to use with their own personal devices. Pixar has invited members of the visually impaired community to focus group screenings for more than eight years in an effort to craft the narration in the most effective and enjoyable manner possible.

FINDING DORY is the 17th Disney•Pixar film to feature the complimentary audio accessibility via the DMA app, which is currently only available in the U.S. Audio synchronization technology is provided by Audible Magic.

FINDING DORY just keeps swimming into theaters June 17, 2016.