Are You Ready for It? What To Watch Before the Eras Tour Comes to Theaters
Taylor Swift | The Eras Tour is coming to theaters on October 13, and to ensure you’re not the problem, take a journey through Swift’s discography and filmography with these streaming options.
Taylor Swift began her Eras Tour back in March 2023, and after 52 shows in the U.S., fans across the country will now be able to watch the filmed concert in theaters this October.
Now, before you get too worried, Taylor made The Eras Tour concert film in compliance with SAG-AFTRA, the striking actors union. The project was filmed in Los Angeles, at SoFi Stadium, without any studio involvement, and was self-financed. With over $26 million in pre-sales in the first three hours of ticket sales, the concert film is projected to be massive for movie theaters. In fact, other films are moving their release dates to accommodate Taylor!
So if you’re ready to go where Taylor goes, catch up on some of her previous #ERAS before heading to theaters this fall. Stay fearless because we’ve got you covered!
We went back in time and found the best things to watch for each of Taylor Swift’s eras. Plus, we added a section at the end for all of Taylor’s Saturday Night Live appearances—from her double duty appearance as host and musical guest to her mind-blowing performance of “All Too Well (10 Minute Version).”
Do you believe it? Yep, you can see them all now.
We’re kicking it old school with Taylor’s first album, so queue up Disney+, and let’s check out the other eras-spanning tour burnin’ up this summer: The Jonas Brothers!
Jonas Brothers: The 3D Concert Experience | Disney+
Taylor Swift showed up as a guest for some dates of the Jonas Brothers’ Burning Up tour, and her appearance singing “Should’ve Said No” made it into this concert documentary. This was Taylor’s first appearance in a concert film, and her Eras concert film arrives in October, so what better place to start than the very beginning?
The album is country pop with crossover appeal. It certainly brought Swift’s music to a greater audience with hits like “You Belong with Me” and “Love Story.” It also doesn’t hurt that the album sold over 12 million copies and won Swift her first Grammy for Album of the Year.
Swift’s second album means a second appearance in a Disney+ film. First, it was the Jonas Brothers, and this time we have Hannah Montana, aka Miley Cyrus. (Imagine if every album release meant a Disney+ film!) Fearless’s music actually makes sense in the world of Hannah Montana, and Swift was asked to write two songs for the movie: “Crazier” and “You’ll Always Find Your Way Back Home.”
Hannah Montana: The Movie | Disney+
Taylor appears in Hannah Montana: The Movie playing “Crazier” at an open mic fundraiser to save a park. While it’s a small appearance, it does count! She also co-wrote “You’ll Always Find Your Way Back Home,” which Hannah Montana performs at the end of the film.
We have two options for this 2010 album, which includes one of my favorite T. Swift songs: “The Story of Us.” If you want to stay in the love mood, go for Valentine’s Day. But if you’re feeling heartbreak and ready to send a “Dear John” letter, go scorched Earth in The Hunger Games.
Valentine’s Day | Available to rent
Valentine’s Day has everything: Taylor Swift, an original song, and Taylor Lautner. Seriously, what more could you want? Taylor Swift and Taylor Lautner met in this movie, and you can feel the chemistry. Flash forward 13 years later, Taylor and Taylor reunited for the “I Can See You” music video for Speak Now (Taylor’s Version), bringing everything full circle.
The Hunger Games | YouTube (free with ads)
Now, T. Swift doesn’t make a cameo appearance in Panem, but the first single from the film’s soundtrack album is “Safe & Sound” by Taylor Swift featuring The Civil Wars. The song won a Grammy, and it feels like the woodsy songs Swift later explores on folklore and evermore. And let’s not forget “Eyes Open.” Though it doesn’t appear in the movie, it’s part of the soundtrack. With its music that feels like a bridge between Speak Now and Red and its dystopian lyrics, it’s a classic. Seriously, take a listen again—it’s fantastic. And the re-recording on Red (Taylor’s Version) might be even better!
With Red, Taylor Swift moved beyond country pop and to pop, country, rock, and even genres like dubstep on “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together.” This is the album that changed everything for Swift—and it was her third consecutive album at #1 for at least six weeks, tying a record from The Beatles. Are we saying Taylor is more influential than the Beatles? Well, did the Beatles ever star in The Lorax? (And no, Magical Mystery Tour doesn’t count, even though it’s a similar psychedelic experience.)
The Lorax | Peacock
After a role in Valentine’s Day, Swift stepped up her filmography with the animated adaptation of the classic Dr. Suess book. Even though her day job is as a musician and vocalist, this is Swift’s first—and so far only—role strictly voice acting. In The Lorax, Swift plays Audrey, the love interest for protagonist Ted (Zac Efron), who learned about the Lorax from the Once-ler. The movie did pretty well, and it’s a fun watch from the animation studio behind Despicable Me and Sing. Swift does not perform on the film’s soundtrack, though.
This may well be your CableTV.com writer’s favorite Swift album—although I do love Speak Now and folklore … Okay, we’re getting off track. 1989 takes its name from Swift’s birth year and dives right into 1980s synth-pop, moving past the acoustic arrangements of her earlier albums. The album spent 11 weeks at #1 and won the Grammy for Album of the Year, cementing Swift’s reputation (haha, see what we did there?) as one of the most influential musical acts of her generation.
The Giver | Paramount+ with Showtime
Based on the 1993 young adult novel by Lois Lowry, The Giver follows Jonas (Brenton Thwaites) as he spends time with an old man called The Giver (Jeff Bridges), who is the sole keeper of memories in the idyllic community where they all live. Taylor Swift stars as Rosemary, daughter of the Giver, who gave up the memories she received because it was too distressing. Swift has a small but integral role in the movie alongside film stars like Jeff Bridges and Meryl Streep.
We know One Chance is a bit of an oddball choice, but hear us out: Taylor Swift wrote “Sweeter Than Fiction” for the film’s soundtrack between albums. What came next, you ask? 1989. Okay, but why is this particular song important to know before hitting up Taylor Swift: The Eras Tour? Because it was the first time Swift and Jack Antonoff wrote and produced music together. Swifties now know Antonoff as the co-writer and co-producer on six albums: 1989, reputation, Lover, folklore, evermore, and Midnights plus Taylor’s Version of Fearless, Red, and Speak Now. Look out for the re-recorded version, rumored to be on the forthcoming 1989 (Taylor’s Version).
A take on tabloid scrutiny and the celebrity life, Taylor Swift’s album reputation came out in 2017 with a focus on electro-pop and electronic music. The album contains layers, with anger leading to love and the trap beats of “… Ready for It?” to the piano on “New Year’s Day.” Like the previous four albums, reputation debuted at #1 and marked an evolution in Swift’s music.
Taylor Swift: Reputation Stadium Tour | Netflix
Following that evolution, it made sense to see Taylor take the songs on the road. The Reputation Stadium Tour received universal acclaim with remarks on its high-tech production value and Swift’s performances. The setlist spans multiple albums, and the concert at AT&T Stadium was released on Netflix as an original concert film, which you can stream at any time.
Fifty Shades Darker | Max
The second installment in the Fifty Shades film series includes what might be one of Taylor Swift’s best soundtrack songs. A duet with Zayn Malik, “I Don’t Wanna Live Forever” was written by Swift and Sam Dew with frequent collaborator Jack Antonoff who also produced. An electro-pop and R&B ballad, the song came right after 1989 and right before reputation—a perfect bridge between eras.
The first album following her split from Big Machine Records (which later led to the Taylor’s Version albums), Lover is a total 180 from reputation, focusing on, well, love. Lover has a bright electro-pop sound focusing on everything from commitment to heartache. The album became Swift’s sixth-consecutive album to debut at #1.
Cats | Max
Oh yeah, we went there. This is the biggest movie Taylor Swift has been in to date—it includes an original song by her and Andrew Lloyd Weber, along with her singing and acting with such icons as Sir Ian McKellen, Dame Judi Dench, Idris Elba, and Jennifer Hudson. Is it good? You decide. But we’ll leave this here so you can complete the journey. (Did we mention it’s about cats—Taylor’s favorite animal? Was that not clear?)
Miss Americana | Netflix
Named after the song “Miss Americana & the Heartbreak Prince” in Lover, this is the definitive Taylor Swift documentary, following her across several years and offering an unvarnished look at the pop superstar. The documentary follows Swift from the end of reputation through her Lover era. “Only the Young” also debuted in the end credits of the film—so you get not only 90 minutes of Swift lore, but also a new song at the end too!
City of Lover | YouTube
We’ve got more concert film for this album since Swift was never able to tour behind Lover. The TV special, City of Lover, filmed in Paris and is not technically available to stream anywhere anymore. It was originally broadcast on ABC and then went to Hulu and Disney+, but it has since been removed. So where can you see it? The TV broadcast version is on YouTube, and it’s totally worth the watch.
Let’s call this one Taylor Swift’s pandemic project. Swift and her collaborators made an album remotely during a pandemic with instrumentation that feels more like an indie record (yep, this one is much cooler than mine). The album won the Grammy for Album of the Year (Swift’s third win after Fearless and 1989) and was the top-selling album of 2020.
Folklore: The Long Pond Studio Sessions | Disney+
A cross between a concert film and an album documentary, Folklore: The Long Pond Studio Sessions was made during the COVID-19 pandemic (like the album) with just three people in a room: Taylor Swift, Aaron Dessner, and Jack Antonoff (again, like the album). The group performs all songs from folklore, and collaborator Justin Vernon (aka Bon Iver) Zooms in for a song. The documentary is Swift’s directorial debut and is about three people who made an album during a pandemic getting together to celebrate. (A return to Disney after the Jonas Brothers and Hannah Montana—this time Taylor gets her own film to shine in.)
The favorite album of CTV’s resident Swiftie, Laura, evermore came right after folklore and was the second collaboration between Aaron Dessner, Jack Antonoff, and Taylor Swift. With tales of love, grief, and human emotion, evermore blends the indie music of folklore with more alternative rock and guest artists. The album reached #1 in nine countries and was nominated for Album of the Year, a second consecutive nomination for Swift.
Amsterdam | Hulu
In one of her few on-screen appearances in the film, Taylor Swift steals the show and literally sets the plot in motion in Amsterdam. It’s a small role next to acting heavyweights like Christian Bale and John David Washington, but trust us, it’s worth it.
Where the Crawdads Sing | Netflix
When the trailer for the 2022 film was released, viewers were in for a surprise: “Carolina,” a new song from Taylor Swift and co-producer Aaron Dessner, was featured. The song feels a lot like Swift’s most recent albums, folklore and evermore. Swift wanted to be part of the soundtrack and wrote “Carolina” to fit the film. The song plays over the film’s end credits.
Fearless (Taylor’s Version)
This was the first album Taylor re-recorded as a counteraction to her 2019 masters dispute. With the re-recordings, Swift owns the masters and all of her work. It includes all the tracks from Fearless plus the soundtrack song from Valentine’s Day, and six additional tracks “From the Vault.” Swift brought in Jack Antonoff and Aaron Dessner for production help on the vault tracks, reuniting the team from folklore and evermore (who can also be seen in the Long Pond Studio Sessions documentary).
But we’re here for Fearless, and Taylor’s Version gives us a great opportunity to revisit the original documentary about the album.
Journey to Fearless | YouTube
While Speak Now includes the first concert film for Taylor Swift, Fearless is the first documentary about Swift and her music. It combines interviews and behind-the-scenes footage over the course of three episodes to tell the story of Swift’s second studio album and her first headlining tour.
Red (Taylor’s Version)
Released a little over six months after Fearless (Taylor’s Version), Red (Taylor’s Version) is Swift’s second re-recorded album. The legendary “All Too Well” makes two appearances on the album, but we’re focused on the 10-minute vault track. The album topped the chart in nine countries, and “All Too Well (10 Minute Version)” led to Swift’s first short film and an iconic performance on Saturday Night Live.
All Too Well: The Short Film | YouTube
This is it: The slow-burning ballad that led everyone to ask about the scarf and became the longest song to reach number one on the Billboard charts. But we’re here to talk about the short film. Starring Sadie Sink and Dylan O’Brien in Swift’s filmmaking debut, the short film follows the up-and-down relationship of a couple across seven chapters. The short screened at film festivals and premiered in New York City, but you can watch it right now on YouTube.
Taylor Swift’s most recent studio album released in October 2022, and let’s just say that when it walked in the room, it made the whole place shimmer. It’s not pop like 1989 or Red. it’s not country like Fearless and Speak Now. And it’s not indie folk like folklore and evermore … this is something different, which means we need something different to watch.
Taylor Swift: The Eras Tour | Coming to theaters October 13
This is it … the big one. Taylor Swift: The Eras Tour is going to be a juggernaut, probably the biggest concert film we’ll ever see. It makes sense. Spanning the 10 eras of Taylor’s albums, it covers the majority of her discography in a concert experience that fueled the summer. I mean, what more can we say? You’re a Swift fan, you’re here for a reason—you know why The Eras Tour is a big deal. (But if you want more details, we’ve got you covered.) “It’s gonna be called the Eras tour,” Taylor said. “See you there.”
Speak Now (Taylor’s Version)
Taylor announced her third re-recorded album during the Eras Tour. It’s a great album about growing up and finding yourself, and Taylor’s Version adds some new dynamics to the older songs. There are also six tracks “From the Vault,” but it’s still a great time to revisit the original tour.
Speak Now World Tour – Live | YouTube
Watching the first live album and concert film from Taylor Swift shows how far she’s come. The Speak Now World Tour was over 100 shows in a mix of arenas and stadiums, but it truly showcases Taylor’s command of a crowd with arm lyrics, acoustic covers, and special guests. Also, come on, the surprise covers set feels a lot like the acoustic set on the Eras Tour … right?
1989 (Taylor’s Version)
This album isn’t out yet (it’s releasing on October 27, 2023, two weeks after The Eras Tour comes to theaters) but if it’s anything like other recent re-recordings, it’s going to be an excellent addition to the canon with five tracks from the vault.
We’ve already heard “Wildest Dreams (Taylor’s Version)” and “This Love (Taylor’s Version),” but we’ll have to wait and see how the rest of the album sounds.
What better way to get ready for the Eras concert film and 1989 (Taylor’s Version) than by watching the original 1989 World Tour live? Trust us, this concert rocks! Filmed in Sydney and including clips of other venues, we get a full setlist from Taylor’s 1989 tour, plus behind-the-scenes looks at special guests and songs. You’re gonna be rocking out and shaking it off in no time.
Special guest slot: Saturday Night Live
You didn’t think we’d have a list of what to watch before The Eras Tour and not include Taylor Swift’s many appearances on Saturday Night Live, did you?
Saturday Night Live | Peacock
Taylor Swift has been on Saturday Night Live five times: four as musical guest and once as host and musical guest. Her performances are always great—that 10-minute performance of “All Too Well” is a classic—while her hosting debut is still fantastic. Seriously, check out her monologue and tell us it’s not hilarious.
- Season 34, Episode 12: January 10, 2009, with host Neil Patrick Harris.
- Songs performed: “Love Story” and “Forever & Always” from Fearless
- Season 35, Episode 5: November 7, 2009, with Taylor Swift hosting and performing as the musical guest.
- Songs performed: “You Belong With Me” and “Untouchable” from Fearless
- Season 43, Episode 5: November 11, 2017, with host Tiffany Haddish
- Songs performed: “…Ready For It?” and “Call It What You Want” from reputation
- Season 45, Episode 2: October 5, 2019, with host Phoebe Waller-Bridge
- Songs performed: “Lover” and “False God” from Lover
- Season 47, Episode 6: November 13, 2021, with host Jonathan Majors
- Songs performed: “All Too Well (10 Minute Version)” from Red (Taylor’s Version)
All of Taylor’s Saturday Night Live episodes are available to stream on Peacock.
NPR’s Tiny Desk | YouTube
Follow Taylor’s Eras
This mix of concert films, scripted appearances, and songs never go out of style. So brush up your Taylor Swift and get ready for Taylor Swift: The Eras Tour coming to theaters in North America on October 13.