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« Poll: Voters See The American Dream Dying Under Biden | Main | Quick Hits »
November 27, 2023

Disney Has Another Failure On Its Hands With Activist, Pro-Socialist-Revolution "Childrens" Animation Movie Wish
Plus: Doctor Who/Whom

Even leftwing industry-shill outlets like Variety cannot hide Bob Iger's woke failure any longer.

But they're still trying, as we'll see.

Wish didn't debut at #1.

It didn't even debut at #2.

It came in third, behind the Hunger Games prequel which premiered last week, and behind the R-rated, mixed-review Napoleon. Which is very long, so it doesn't have many showings a day.

Wish, on the other hand, is like 80 minutes long, so it has lots and lots of showings.

"Wish" misfired in its opening weekend, extending Disney's bleak box office fortunes.

The animated musical fable, about the Wishing Star that so many Disney characters have wished upon over the studio's century-long history, failed to become the de facto choice for families around Thanksgiving. "Wish" opened in third place with a dull $31.7 million over the five-day holiday, a far cry from Disney's past Turkey Day feasts. Perhaps King Magnifico, the movie's villain (voiced by Chris Pine), is holding hostage the wishes of Disney executives?

Instead of recapturing the studio's magic, "Wish" joins a long list of its underperforming 2023 tentpoles, such as "The Marvels," "Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny," "The Haunted Mansion," and "Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania." This summer's "The Little Mermaid" didn't completely flounder with $569 million worldwide, but it's nowhere near the billion-dollar threshold that Disney's prior live-action adaptations (like "The Lion King" or "Beauty and the Beast") surpassed with ease. And although "Elemental" finished with $495 million globally, much stronger than its disappointing opening weekend would have suggested, Pixar hasn't restored its former glory after audiences were trained to watch on Disney+. (Disney is hoping that "Wish" has similar staying power during the busy holiday season.)

Disney's only unmitigated success in 2023 has been "Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3," which opened in May and generated a healthy $845 million globally. And even then, analysts expected the epic conclusion to James Gunn's trilogy about intergalactic misfits to get closer to $1 billion, or at least end the series on a high. (2017's "Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2" remains the highest-grossing entry with $863 million.) Without a runaway blockbuster in the bunch, it's the first time since 2014 (except for the pandemic-stricken years of 2020 and 2021) that Disney hasn't launched a billion-dollar release.

It's an unthinkable reality for Disney after one of the most remarkable stretches of sheer box office domination. It reached its zenith in 2019 when seven (!) of the studio's releases, including "Avengers: Endgame" and "The Lion King," hit $1 billion globally. With its repertoire of Marvel, Pixar and Lucasfilm, Disney was minting money with anything it put in theaters. But this year has hinted that Disney no longer has the Midas touch at the box office.

"Disney set an impossibly high bar for itself during the 2010s, firing every cannon in its arsenal," says Shawn Robbins, the chief analyst at Boxoffice Pro. "The downside to success is that it becomes expected every time. The studio was always going to be in a challenged position when the well started to run dry."

Uh, no. So much spinning for Disney. Disney is not merely underperforming compared to their 2018-2019 high. They're outright flopping, no matter what the basis of comparison. YouTubers who follow Disney report that in the last few years, Disney has made four out of the five biggest box office failures of all time, with two of them joining that list of failure in just 2023 alone.

Case in point: "Avatar: The Way of Water," which Disney released at the end of 2022, is the seventh-highest grossing domestic release of this year with $283 million, surpassing the majority of the studio's would-be blockbusters: "Ant-Man 3" ($214 million), "Indiana Jones 5" ($174 million), "Elemental" ($154 million), "The Marvels" ($76 million so far) and "Haunted Mansion" ($67 million), among them.

You can't count Avatar. Disney does not own it, did not make it, and only receives a small cut of its box office. They are merely the distributor of that movie, having inherited it when they bought Fox studios, and James Cameron and his partners own almost all of the box office takings

As the movie theater business recovers from the pandemic, as well as the strikes that pushed several big blockbusters into 2024 and beyond, every studio has been forced to contend with a shrinking global box office. And while Disney doesn't have one of the top three movies of the year -- those spots belong to Warner Bros. "Barbie" ($1.4 billion) and Universal's "The Super Mario Bros. Movie" ($1.3 billion) and "Oppenheimer" ($950 million) -- it still has four of the 10-highest grossing releases worldwide. No other studio has more than two. Some of Disney's modest successes or outright flops would be classified as smashes for its rivals.

This is pure Bob Iger spin -- and pure progressive cope. This is straight from Iger's deceptive shareholder earnings conference meeting. On a simple gross revenues basis, yes, Disney had four of the top ten highest grossing films -- but most of them are actually money losers because their budgets were so huge.

The Marvels has currently made $190 million globally. That would sound like a lot of money, until you consider the film had a budget (with deductions made for British tax credits) of around $280 million, with another $100 million on top of that for marketing. (And of course the studio only takes 50% of the gross receipts.)

Bob Iger is a liar and a hustler and should be investigated by the SEC for making plainly-deceptive claims like this, and Variety should know better than to repeat them uncritically.

Much later in the piece, Variety admits this:

But one of the biggest elements is Disney movies are hugely expensive. They require production budgets of around $200 million, not including $100 million in marketing costs. This means the studio's films have sky-high benchmarks to break even. For any other studio, getting to $500 million worldwide is an impressive feat. But for Disney, it's necessary to rationalize these film's existence. Disney justifies these costs because its movies provide value beyond their theatrical revenues; they inspire lucrative consumer product lines, theme park attractions and eventual streaming releases on Disney+.

Disney spends huge sums of money in the belief that they are creating characters and movies that will feed their parks business.

But does anyone believe that people will flock to Disney's parks to see characters the public has so overwhelmingly rejected? How many people are going to a Disney park for the thrill of seeing a severe-looking Karen actress dressed up as Captain Marvel?

Disney's CEO Bob Iger has admitted the studio's mistake in leaning into quantity over quality during the pandemic. "We lost some focus," he said during a recent earnings call.

He's focusing on woke propaganda and his dream of being the Democrat candidate for president in 2028, not in producing value for consumers or shareholders.

Nolte:

The Disney Grooming Institute had the worst box office year imaginable in 2023. Couldn't happen to a nicer den of thieves of children's innocence.

After losing $106 million on Lightyear (2022) and another $152 million on Strange World (2022) -- both of which featured prominent gay plotlines aimed at little kids -- the Disney Grooming Syndicate roared into 2023, hoping for a much better year.

But...

Thanks to Disney's cratered reputation and string of terrible movies where good storytelling and relatable characters took a backseat to divisive politics, 2023 was an even bigger disaster.

According to my imperfect but good-faith estimates, only one Disney movie went into the black.

That's Guardians of the Galaxy 3, which made a smallish profit but not the big money Disney was hoping for the topper to the trilogy. He estimates that Elementals "only" lost $1.5 million, so that almost broke even.

But when you invest money, you're not looking to break even. If you just parked your money in a money market, you'd make 4.5% profit or something like that. "Breaking even" is actually losing money when you consider the things you could have invested in instead.

And the rest of Disney's offerings lost tens of millions or even hundreds of millions. I heard an estimate that Disney has lost over a billion dollars cumulative for all of its 2023 releases.

Meanwhile, Doctor Who returned this weekend. Or Doctor Who/Whom, as people are now calling it.

The episode was all about transgenderism, baby. Including his new transgender teen companion, and a quick lecture about asking for an alien's Preferred Pronouns.

Trans rights are human rights -- and alien rights, too.

The 60th-anniversary episode of "Doctor Who" featured a transgender sidekick who scolds the show's main character for "misgendering" an alien, eliciting backlash from conservatives on X.

Doctor Who called an alien known as Beep the Meep a "him," when a transgender character, who is the child of former sidekick Donna Noble, said, "You're assuming he as a pronoun?"

"My chosen pronoun is the definite article. I am always 'The Meep,'" the alien said after Dr. Who apologized and asked if the character was a, "he, she, or they."

The character later refers to Doctor Who as "male-presenting."

"You've got all that power. But there is a way to get rid of it. Something a male-presenting time-Lord will never understand."

Men denigrated again. And demanding that men give up their "power" to women and transsexuals.

It never gets old.


>>> Tennant is doing Who again?

I mean, such as it is. He's only doing three "specials," to try to restore interest in the franchise before the new doctor, a gay black man (of course!), takes over.

I should have mentioned that in the original post. Yes, the next new Doctor is gay and black. So they brought in Tennant briefly to try to get former fans to come back.

#RIPDoctorWho was trending on twitter over the weekend. But honestly, it's been dead for years and years.






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