Mostrando entradas con la etiqueta disney. Mostrar todas las entradas
Mostrando entradas con la etiqueta disney. Mostrar todas las entradas

7 de agosto de 2018

The Walt Disney Co. 3rd Quarter Earnings Report: Overall Growth, Short of Estimates

The Walt Disney Company has just released their earnings report for the third fiscal quarter of 2018. This Q3, which ended on June 30th, saw significant growth in diluted earnings per share for the company as well as overall increases in revenues and segment operating income, yet still fell short of Wall Street estimates.
Chairman and CEO Bob Iger said in a statement,
We’re pleased with our results in the quarter, including a double-digit increase in earnings per share, and excited about the opportunities ahead for continued growth. Having earned the overwhelming support of shareholders, we are more enthusiastic about the 21st Century Fox acquisition than ever, and confident in our ability to fully leverage these assets along with our own incredible brands, franchises and businesses to drive significant value across the entire company.
This quarter’s earnings are broken down into the Walt Disney Company’s previous divisions, which were in place before a strategic reorganization in March that divided the company into the Parks, Experiences, and Consumer Products; Direct-to-Consumer and International; Media Networks; and Studio Entertainment divisions. Although already in place, Disney does not expect to begin financial reporting under the new structure until fiscal 2019.

Overall Earnings

Diluted earnings per share jumped a full 29% from last year’s 3rd quarter, from $1.51 to $1.95. Revenues for the company showed a 7% increase from last year, raising from $14.238 billion to $15.228 billion; operating income grew from $4.011 billion to $4.193 billion, a 5% boost.

Comparing the first 9 months of 2018 with the same time period last year, revenues rose 7%, operating income grew 4%, and diluted earnings per share increased a total of 50% over 2017.
  • Media Networks: 5% growth in revenues — 1% loss in operating income.
  • Parks and Resorts: 6% growth in revenues — 15% growth in operating income.
  • Studio Entertainment: 20% growth in revenues — 11% growth in operating income.
  • Consumer Products & Interactive Media: 8% loss in revenues — 10% loss in operating income.

Media Networks

The Media Networks division brought in $6.156 billion in revenues this quarter compared to 2017’s $5.866 billion, a 5% jump from 2017’s Q3. Their revenues for the entire fiscal year to date have increased 3%, from 2017’s $18.045 billion to this year’s $18.537 billion.

Segment operating income for the division’s third quarter fell 1% from last year — $1.842 billion down to $1.842 billion. Income for the first nine months of the year dropped a full 6% from last year’s $5.427 billion, coming in at just $5.097 billion.

The losses in operating income were primarily caused by Disney’s investment in BAMTech and lowered equity in the income of investees. Disney obtained a controlling interest in BAMTech — the digital content platform creator responsible for ESPN+ and Disney’s upcoming streaming service —at the end of fiscal 2017. They explain the loss related to it as ” higher content and marketing costs and ongoing investments in their technology platform including costs associated with ESPN+, which was launched in April 2018.”

Disney cites losses related to Hulu and A+E for its performance in equity of the income of investees, stating, “The decrease at Hulu was driven by higher programming and labor costs, partially offset by growth in subscription and advertising revenue. The decrease at A+E was due to lower advertising revenue and higher programming costs, partially offset by higher program sales.”

Parks and Resorts

Compared to last year’s Q3, Parks and Resorts saw growth of 6% in revenues, from $4.894 billion to $5.193 billion, and 15% in segment operating income, from $1.168 billion to $1.339 billion. The division saw revenues increase from $13.748 billion for the first nine months of 2017 to $15.226 billion this year — 11% growth year-over-year. Segment operating income jumped 20% for the three-quarter period, from $3.028 billion to $3.640 billion.

Disney attributes the boost of domestic parks operating income to increased guest spending — “increases in average ticket prices, food, beverage and merchandise spending and average daily hotel room rates.” — which was somewhat offset by labor costs.

Disney Cruise Line’s growth was due to “higher passenger cruise days,” which is thanks to the Disney Fantasy being in dry-dock during last year’s Q3.

Both Shanghai Disney Resort and Hong Kong Disneyland Resort contributed to international Parks and Resort growth in operating income. Disney saw attendance increase in Shanghai, although they did suffer from guests spending less on average due to lower ticket prices. Hong Kong’s success was based on “higher occupied room nights, average ticket prices and attendance.”

Studio Entertainment

Studio Entertainment saw major increase across the board. Quarterly revenues increased 20% from last year, leaping from $2.393 billion to $2.878 billion — operating income raised from $639 million to $708 million, an 11% jump.

Comparing the first three quarters of the fiscal year, revenue raised 11% and operating income grew 12%. Revenue was $7.836 billion compared to 2017’s $6.947 billion — operating income was $2.384 billion compared to last year’s $2.137 billion.
Success in this division can be explained by comparing the motion picture releases for the third fiscal quarters of both years. 2017 saw the release of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 and Cars 3Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales, and the ongoing profits from Beauty and the Beast — 2018 debuted Avengers: Infinity WarIncredibles 2Solo: A Star Wars Story, and still profited from the ongoing success of Black Panther.
Timing of Star Wars films affected DVD/Blu-ray sales, as this year’s title, The Last Jedi, was released in the 2nd quarter, compared to Rogue One‘s 3rd quarter release last year.

Consumer Products & Interactive Media

The least successful division by far, Consumer Products dropped 8% for revenues this quarter over last year, from $1.085 billion to $1.001 billion — revenues saw a decrease of 2% for the first nine months of the year, from $3.618 billion down to $3.528 billion.

Q3 operating income fell from $362 million to $324 million, a 10% loss — it suffered a 6% loss for the first three fiscal quarters, from last year’s $1.371 billion to $1.295 billion.

Disney blamed the loss on “The decrease in income from licensing activities was driven by lower revenue from products based on Spider-Man and Cars, partially offset by an increase from products based on Avengers.”

Announcements and Strategies for the Future

  • When looking forward to the upcoming streaming service that is expected to premiere in fall of 2019, Iger said, “We’re gonna walk before we run with building the content library we intend to build.”
    He added, however that “consumers are picking and choosing” their content and that Disney has a “brand to compete along with Netflix, Amazon and anyone in the market.”
    Iger boasted that “the only place people will be able to get Marvel, Pixar, and Lucasfilm products will be on this channel, so we see no need to rush or implement a high volume content library.”
  • In regards to the Parks and Resorts division, Iger commented that “Toy Story Land and Star Wars will give us more revenue yield in 2019.”
  • When discussing Studio Entertainment, Iger listed the movies scheduled for 2019, and commented that “the studio slate is about as strong as it gets.”
    Movies scheduled include Captain MarvelToy Story 4Aladdin (live action), Dumbo (live action), Frozen 2Star Wars: Episode IXThe Lion King (live action), and The Jungle Cruise.
    Iger also said that “the 2019 studio move slate is clean and unencumbered [by existing licensing deals].”

28 de junio de 2018

Disney obtuvo la aprobación para la compra de 21st Century Fox

La aprobación del Departamento de Justicia estadounidense es una victoria para Disney en su puja con Comcast por uno de los mayores activos de la industria de medios. La semana pasada, Fox aceptó una oferta mejorada de Disney tras una fuerte oferta de Comcast de 65 mil millones de dólares

Los reguladores antimonopolio de EEUU aprobaron la propuesta de compra de Disney de USD $71.300 millones por activos de FOX (21st Century Fox), sin incluir deuda asumida, y obliga a Disney a vender 22 redes deportivas regionales como condición principal.

La condición ha sido aceptada en principio por el grupo Disney, por lo que, de ser ratificado el acuerdo en los tribunales, contará entonces con la luz verde oficial para cerrar la operación.

En un comunicado oficial, el Departamento de Justicia anunció que la División Antimonopolio presentó hoy en un tribunal de Nueva York un recurso para bloquear esa adquisición por supuestas lesiones a la libre competencia exigiendo la venta de las cadenas regionales.

Sin embargo, a la vez que se presentó ese recurso se anunció un acuerdo extrajudicial que, si es aceptado por el juez, implicará que Fox se desprenderá de esos canales regionales para contar con la luz verde oficial.

El Departamento de Justicia recordó que, sin incluir deuda asumida., por lo que la fusión por absorción podría generar lesiones para la libre competencia en ese sector.

Al aceptar esa condición, las cadenas regionales tendrán que ser vendidas a una tercera firma que sea aceptada por los reguladores.

La compañía 21st Century Fox, el consorcio liderado por Rupert Murdoch, anunció su intención de desprenderse de la productora de cine 20th Century Fox y de los canales de televisión Nat Geo y FX, entre otros activos.

La idea de Murdoch es concentrarse en el sector de noticias, conservando Fox News y Fox Sports, así como las estaciones de televisión que distribuyen esas noticias, un conglomerado que pasará a llamarse New Fox.

Las dos compañías llevan en negociaciones desde el año pasado, pero el consorcio Comcast, que incluye las cadenas NBC y Telemundo, estaba intentando hacerse también con esos activos de la Fox y llegó a superar la oferta inicial que había hecho Disney.

En respuesta, el grupo Walt Disney optó el 20 de junio por presentar una oferta aún superior que, incluyendo deuda asumida, alcanza los 85.100 millones de dólares.

Esta aprobación deja a Disney un paso más cerca para la finalización de la compra luego de que el gigante del entretenimiento la semana pasada elevó su oferta por poco más de US$6 millones en respuesta a un desafío de Comcast.

Disney y Comcast estarían buscando adquirir activos de Fox para reforzar su contenido y producción, sobre la amenaza de Netflix y de otras empresas emergentes de streaming como Amazon Video, Hulu o iTunes.

La decisión anunciada hoy fue recibida con un avance del 1,11 % en los títulos de Disney a media sesión de Wall Street y una ganancia del 1,24 % en los de la Fox, mientras que los de Comcast retrocedían un 0,2 %.

21 de abril de 2018


Ready for a Rescue Rangers nostalgia trip? Given how often I hum the theme song to myself, my answer to that question is “Always,” so I was delighted to see artist Becky Dreistadt’s unofficial renditions of Chip, Dale, Gadget, and Monterey Jack pop up on Twitter this past week.

Dreistardt, a character designer for Disney XD’s Star vs. the Forces of Evil, shared her modernized portraits of the chipmunks, Gadget, and the whole gang, plus a slew of what she dubbed “adventure ideas.”

Using the series’ basic concept of Chip and Dale solving mysteries with the aid of one extremely capable mouse in a jumpsuit (Gadget) and another rodent whose cheese fixation is a little over the top (Monty), Dreistadt was able to develop what could easily be a springboard for entire episodes of a Rescue Rangers reboot.

I’m particularly intrigued by whatever Monty was framed for. Who did this to you, Monty? Was it Zipper? I never trusted that guy!

Given the proliferation of reboots across all TV genres, a modernized Rescue Rangers doesn’t seem out of the realm of possibility. And from the look of it, Dreistadt and her partner Frank Gibson, who contributed both his voice and his writing talent to Bee and PuppyCat, would be the right co-showrunners for the job. My only request: retaining that flawless theme song (though if Ramin Djawadi wants to make it moodier and darker and more epic, I wouldn’t be opposed).

9 de febrero de 2018

Disney Cruise Line essentials: The Navigator App

One of the new experiences for me on my recent cruise aboard the Disney Dream was the Disney Cruise Line Navigator App. It’s a free essential app that helps you do everything from navigate the ship, scout upcoming eventsctivities and menus, and even stay in touch with your travel party while on board. It also comes with a nifty count-down clock to help you get excited as your departure date approaches.

Note: The Disney Blog was invited to experience the Disney Dream at a very reduced media rate. But all the opinions and editorial on the blog are our own.

The first thing to know is that the app doesn’t do much on dry land. You get to enter the date of your cruise and see a count down clock and that’s about it. It will also remind you of important dates, like when to start packing for your cruise.

The real excitement begins once you’re on the ship. Once you’re connected to the ship’s wifi (using the app via wifi is free, but full wifi with internet is an upcharge), you’ll have access to the app’s six main functions.

1) Onboard Chat

Online chat works similarly to a text app on your phone. The people staying in your stateroom will automatically appear in the app, but you can share your contact information with anyone on the ship and then exchange chats. Useful if you have friends in another cabin or meet someone while enjoying the ship’s amenities. There are also child privacy levels configurable, so you can be comfortable knowing they’re safe on board.

2) Activities

Each night you get a special printed Navigator newsletter with the lists of activities for the next day. However, you may prefer to look that up on the App where you can usualy find additional descriptions of the activity. Also included are the alternate times, if any, that activity will be offered. So if you can’t make the Disney Animation session on night one, you know how many other opportunities youll have ahead of you.

If you have a child in one of the kid’s clubs, having a list of activities on your mobile device is handy to text your child and remind them of something they don’t want to miss or to know when an event they’re interested in might be over, so you can plan time together (yeah, good luck with that).

Tip: Clicking on an activities location will bring up the map for the deck plan where you’ll find your location.

The app also has an alert function. So if you want to be reminded about that wine tasting at 4pm, you’ll get a notification ahead of time.

3) Dining

The dining tab will give you access to the menus for each night’s meals. If you like to know in advance what you’ll be ordering or want to prepare a particularly picky child, these are a great help. If you don’t like the menu, there’s always room service.

Here’s a tip: most of the dining rooms share a central kitchen. So if you see something at Enchanted Garden’s menu, but you’re dining at Royal Palace, you can request to have that item brought instead.

3) Locations & Hours

As you might expect, this gives you the operational hours of various activities and locations on the ship. Click on the location and a deck plan will open to get you going in the right direction.

4) Deck Plans Although a deck plan can be found at each elevtor bank on every floor, having the map of the entire ship in your pocket can come in handy. Need to know if you can get from aft to fore on Deck 3? Your App can show you how.

5) Debarkation Information

This is the sad tab, it’s full of the information you need to know to get off the ship at the end of your journey and go through customs. Good to know, but depressing none-the-less.

6) Daily Summary

The daily summary will have port information if it’s a port day, or day at sea activities. There’s also some important weather information on there, along with suggested attire for the evening’s activities.

Another advantage of the app is that its updated in real time. So if there’s a change in schedule, you’ll find the latest times in the app. Paper Navigators are often out of date even by the time you wake up in the morning.

If you’re wondering, your stateroom will still come with two wave phones. But we found the Navigator app’s ability to text one another perfectly fine. Plus if your smart phone has a camera, there’s a good chance you have it on you anyway to take photos. The only thing you need to watch out for is battery use. If you’re phone uses a lot of battery in wi-fi, you’ll need to keep recharging it throughout the day or bring an external battery.

The app is available to download on both Google Play and the Apple App Store. Once you board there are easy to follow instructions on how to connect to the wireles network. You won’t get internet access (that’s still an upcharge), but you will get access to all the app’s features

We can’t wait for our next opportunity to enjoy a Disney Cruise. The Navigator App was a great addition to the experience and now I can’t imagine a cruise without it. Have you had experience using the Navigator App? Did it make your cruise more enjoyable?

22 de enero de 2018

Minnie Mouse Receives Star On Hollywood Walk of Fame

Minnie Mouse, Disney's iconic co-star to Mickey Mouse, is finally getting the recognition she deserves with a new star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame being awarded to the cartoon character on Monday.

Jan 22nd, is a special day for Disney and Minnie Mouse, as it is marks the 90th anniversary of 'Steamboat Willie,' the first of the animated character's more than 70 films and shorts.

In 1978, Mickey Mouse was the first cartoon character to receive a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. That star was awarded to him on 'Steamboat Willie's' 50th anniversary.

Singer Katy Perry will be joined by Walt Disney Co. CEO Robert Iger to speak at the 11:30 am ceremony honoring the animated character.

Minnie's star will be the 2,627th since the Walk of Fame was first completed in 1961. Other illustrious names being added to the Walk of Fame this year include; "Weird Al" Yankovic, Zoe Saldana, and Lin-Manuel Miranda.

Photo: Getty Images

17 de enero de 2018

Walt Disney Studios Reveals Full 2018 Movie Slate

Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures has released it’s 2018 Movie Slate, which includes synopses, images and information for all of movies scheduled for release this year.

5 de enero de 2018

FX Chief John Landgraf on Disney Deal: ‘We Have What They Want’

FX Networks CEO John Landgraf voiced optimism for his cable group making a smooth transition to Disney ownership in part because Disney does not have any similar channels in its existing TV group.

On the surface, FX’s edgy brand of premium adult-oriented programming would seem a bad fit with Disney’s family-friendly brand. But Landgraf told reporters on Friday that he heard directly from Disney chairman-CEO Bob Iger that Disney pursued the $52.4 billion deal with 21st Century Fox because it wants to expand the scope of its TV production operations. Moreover, Iger told Landgraf that he is a fan of the work turned out by the FX Networks group.

“We have what they want,” Landgraf said. “The oddness that (FX) is so different from Disney’s brand is a good thing. It means that what we do and expertise that we have doesn’t exist currently inside that company.”

Landgraf was pressed during his Q&A session at the winter Television Critics Association press tour in Pasadena, Calif., about his future in the enlarged Disney. He maintained that there have been no formal plans laid out to him about how FX Networks will plug into Disney’s existing hierarchy, assuming the deal is approved by federal regulators, nor has he spoken with Iger or anyone about his role.

Disney’s pursuit of 21st Century Fox assets is clearly a response to the upheaval in the marketplace wrought by the entry of deep-pocketed streaming services. Disney needs the content generated by the Fox assets it hopes to acquire in order to compete on a global scale. Landgraf has been among the most vocal TV executives sounding the alarm about the challenges for traditional linear TV outlets in competing with companies that have much greater resources.

“One of the reasons (Disney) is getting bigger is to be able to compete against the global streaming services,” Landgraf said. FX Networks is poised to become the adult premium content hub for that larger effort. Although there are many unasnwered questions about how Disney will implement that vision, “we can see with clarity that they believe (premium series) is a really good thing to invest in. It drives consumer interest with a streaming service. We end up becoming the adult scripted component of their larger plans.”

Landgraf opened his session with a warning about the deleterious effects on the national psyche by Internet-driven pop culture that he said too often descends into a “daily three-ring media circus.” He echoed the words of Edward R. Murrow in the early days of television with his grave assessment of how the connectivity of the current age is influencing all aspects of media, society and culture.

The unruliness of social media platforms and other Internet-driven communications are concerning, especially as that massive platform is controlled by a handful of tech giants, Landgraf said. He didn’t name names but it was clear he was referring to the companies that have become known as FAANG: Facebook, Apple, Amazon, Netflix and Google.

“We have the most powerful tool for distributing, selecting and shaping information the world has ever known, but those who control it are not held to any firm standard of legal or moral accountability in return for the huge profits and power they derive,” he said.

Joining forces with Disney and its formidable roster of content-producing brands “will undoubtedly help our brand to remain competitive and relevant into the future and through the peak TV era,” Landgraf said. “As the largely unregulated Internet platform looks to become world-swallowing, trillion-dollar companies, Hollywood, and its quaintly old fashioned focus on storytelling, has no choice but to seek the scale needed in order to compete.”

The influx of money chasing talent delivered by Netflix et. al to the creative community has “put an enormous amount of pressure on the business” of traditional linear TV, he said.

Landgraf said he genuinely has no sense of how the enlarged company will be organized. He believes it’s a work in progress within Disney, and he noted that Disney and Fox are prevented by laws and Securities and Exchange Commission rules from doing much in the way of integration before the deal is formally closed. That process is expected to take 12 to 18 months.

“I honestly don’t think they know yet how to organize this vast new company,” Landgraf said. “It’s going to take time to work it out.”

But Landgraf, who has headed FX for the past 15 years, has faith that Disney under Iger’s leadership will be careful not to disrupt the unique culture within the tight-knit FX Networks team. Landgraf cited Disney’s stewardship of Pixar as a good example of how Disney allows units to operate with autonomy. He noted that FX Networks has about 270 employees, much smaller than other cable groups of comparable size.

“We can’t do what we do if we’re not allowed to maintain the integrity of our culture,” he said. “I have every optimism that Disney will understand and support that. They want what we have which is extraordinary television, critical acclaim, Emmys … They’re going to want the best of what we have to offer.”

14 de diciembre de 2017

Lo que cambiará en la televisión con la compra de Disney a Fox

Con esta estrategia quiere fortalecer el grupo en un gigante mediático y del entretenimiento para competir con Netflix, Amazon, Facebook o incluso Apple, cuyas ambiciones han cambiado profundamente el sector.

Walt Disney Co. comprará por 52.400 millones de dólares gran parte de los activos de 21st Century Fox, el grupo mediático fundado por Rupert Murdoch, lo que debería alterar los equilibrios en Hollywoood y Silicon Valley y modificar profundamente el panorama audiovisual y de la industria del entretenimiento en Estados Unidos, y el mundo.

La empresa anunció el jueves que se hará con los estudios de cine de 20th Century Fox para agruparlos con sus propios estudios.

Estas dos compañías produjeron recientemente películas como "Asesinato en el Expreso de Oriente", "Kingsman: el círculo dorado", "El planeta de los simios", "Logan", "Talentos ocultos" (Fox), "Piratas del Caribe", "La bella y la bestia", "Cars 3" y la última entrega de "Star Wars" (Disney), cuyo estreno es este jueves. La mayor parte de estos títulos han sido grandes éxitos en todo el mundo.

Disney, que posee las cadenas de televisión ABC y ESPN y grandes estudios de cine en Hollywood, controlará los canales FX y National Geographic, se reforzará con los canales indios Star y se hará con el 39% que Fox detenta del operador de televisión europeo Sky, presente en Reino Unido, Irlanda, Alemania, Austria e Italia.

Estos activos entran en la estrategia de Bob Iger, CEO de Disney, de transformar el grupo en un gigante mediático y del entretenimiento para competir con Netflix, Amazon, Facebook o incluso Apple, cuyas ambiciones han cambiado profundamente el sector.

Según la firma de inversiones Raymonmd James, 31% de los estadounidenses afirman que los servicios de streaming (Amazon, Video, Hulu...) constituyen su primera fuente de contenidos de video.

La plataforma de video Youtube, controlada por Google, está acelerando por su parte la producción de contenidos originales, mientras que Apple ya ha previsto destinar 1.000 millones de dólares a la creación de programas, según la prensa.

La operación "refuerza The Walt Disney Company en los contenidos y el entretenimiento", subrayó el grupo, que prevé próximamente lanzar su propio servicio de streaming con el fin de establecer relaciones directas con los consumidores.

"Proyectamos ofrecer contenidos de la más alta calidad para los consumidores a escala mundial", insiste Iger, cuyo mandato ha sido prolongado hasta 2021 a pesar de rumores que anunciaban el desembarco de James Murdoch, hijo de Rupert, en el equipo dirigente para asumir la sucesión del gran patrón del grupo.

La transacción marca de todas maneras un importante giro en el imperio construido por Rupert Murdoch.

Reguladores al acecho

El magnate, que cedió gran parte de la conducción de su imperio a sus dos hijos, James y Lachlan, sólo conservará la cadena Fox, la mayor de televisión abierta de Estados Unidos, cercana al presidente republicano Donald Trump, las emisoras locales y cadenas deportivas como Fox Sports. Estos activos serán agrupados en una nueva sociedad separada que cotizará en la bolsa.

También mantendrá el control de sus diarios (el Wall Street Journal y el New York Post en Estados Unidos, el Sun, el Times y el Sunday Times, entre otros, en Reino Unido), que forman parte de la sociedad independiente News Corp.

Los términos financieros del acuerdo firmado con Disney prevén que los accionistas de 21st Century Fox controlarían 25% del nuevo Disney, que recuperará 13.700 millones de dólares de deuda de Fox.

Todavía queda por obtener el visto bueno de las autoridades reguladoras de la competencia de Estados Unidos, una etapa que se prevé ardua puesto que la mayor parte de los medios estadounidenses estarán en manos de un puñado de grandes grupos: Comcast (NBCUniversal), Disney-Fox, Viacom, Sony Pictures y Lions Gate.

"Prevemos un análisis minucioso de parte de los reguladores en todo el mundo, pero esperamos que privilegiarán las ventajas para los consumidores" que tendrá esta operación, dijo Bob Iger.

El Departamento de Justicia de Estados Unidos anunció recientemente su intención de bloquear la compra por 84.500 millones de dólares de Time Warner (estudios de cine Warner Bros, el grupo de canales de cable HBO...) por el operador AT&T, al menos que este último se separe de activos como CNN, uno de los blancos mediáticos preferidos del presidente Donald Trump.

Ultima Hora Disney — Disney to Buy 21st Century Fox Assets for $52.4 Billion in Historic Hollywood Merger

Disney CEO Bob Iger extends contract through 2021 to oversee integration

The Walt Disney Co. has set a $52.4 billion, all-stock deal to acquire 20th Century Fox and other entertainment and sports assets from Rupert Murdoch’s empire. The deal between Disney and 21st Century Fox marks a historic union of Hollywood heavyweights and a bid by Disney to bolster its core TV and film businesses against an onslaught of new competitors in the content arena.

Key elements of the transaction unveiled Thursday morning:

• The deal values the 21st Century Fox assets in the transaction at $66.1 billion, including $13.7 billion in 21st Century Fox debt, or $28 a share. The enterprise value of the deal is $69 billion.

• Disney chairman-CEO Bob Iger has extended his contract with the company for another two years, through the end of 2021, in order to oversee the integration of the assets.

• 21st Century Fox shareholders will receive 0.2745 Disney shares for each Fox share held, giving Fox shareholders about 25% of Disney.

• 21st Century Fox will spinoff Fox Broadcasting Co., Fox Sports, Fox News, Fox Television Stations and a handful of other assets into a new company that will have revenue of $10 billion and earnings of about $2.8 billion. The 20th Century Fox lot in Century City will also remain with the spinoff Fox company.

• 21st Century Fox will continue to pursue its acquisition of the remaining 61% stake in Euro satcaster Sky that it does not already own with the intention of Disney taking it over when the Disney-Fox transaction is completed.

• Disney expects to realize $2 billion in cost savings from combining Disney and Fox’s overlapping businesses within two years of the deal’s closing.

• Disney expects the regulatory review of the acquisition to take as long as 18 months.

“The acquisition of this stellar collection of businesses from 21st Century Fox reflects the increasing consumer demand for a rich diversity of entertainment experiences that are more compelling, accessible and convenient than ever before,” said Iger. “We’re honored and grateful that Rupert Murdoch has entrusted us with the future of businesses he spent a lifetime building, and we’re excited about this extraordinary opportunity to significantly increase our portfolio of well-loved franchises and branded content to greatly enhance our growing direct-to-consumer offerings. The deal will also substantially expand our international reach, allowing us to offer world-class storytelling and innovative distribution platforms to more consumers in key markets around the world.”

21st Century Fox chairman Rupert Murdoch said: “We are extremely proud of all that we have built at 21st Century Fox, and I firmly believe that this combination with Disney will unlock even more value for shareholders as the new Disney continues to set the pace in what is an exciting and dynamic industry. Furthermore, I’m convinced that this combination, under Bob Iger’s leadership, will be one of the greatest companies in the world. I’m grateful and encouraged that Bob has agreed to stay on, and is committed to succeeding with a combined team that is second to none.”

21st Century Fox chairman Rupert Murdoch said: “We are extremely proud of all that we have built at 21st Century Fox, and I firmly believe that this combination with Disney will unlock even more value for shareholders as the new Disney continues to set the pace in what is an exciting and dynamic industry. Furthermore, I’m convinced that this combination, under Bob Iger’s leadership, will be one of the greatest companies in the world. I’m grateful and encouraged that Bob has agreed to stay on, and is committed to succeeding with a combined team that is second to none.”

Disney is betting on an ambitious purchase of a sizable chunk of 21st Century Fox, hoping that more cable networks, production studios and other properties will buoy it into the future as it dives into the direct-to-consumer streaming distribution business with sports and entertainment services planned to launch in 2018 and 2019, respectively.

To feed those new pipelines, Disney is expanding its content production infrastructure with the acquisition of 20th Century Fox, a cable group that includes FX Networks, National Geographic and 300-plus international channels, and 22 regional sports networks. Also included is Fox’s 30% stake in Hulu, 50% share of Endemol Shine Group, the Star India satellite service, and Fox’s 39% interest in Euro satellite broadcaster Sky. Disney emphasized that the transaction was not contingent on Fox closing the buyout of the remainder of Sky.

If federal regulators block the $52.4 billion deal Disney has committed to pay a $2.5 billion breakup fee to 21st Century Fox.

Staying with 21st Century Fox is the Fox broadcast network and its 28 TV stations, the Fox News and Fox Business channels, and the national Fox Sports 1 and Fox Sports 2 networks and cablers Big Ten Network and Fox Deportes. Notably, the 50-acre 20th Century Fox lot in Century City will also remain with the new Fox company.

There was no immediate word from the companies on management plans for the enlarged Disney film and TV operations — a key question for thousands of employees at both companies. Nor did 21st Century Fox specify management plans for the coming spinoff company that will house the remaining Fox assets.

As Disney’s empire expands, another one will shrink. The deal, telegraphed in early November when word first surfaced the two companies had sounded each other out about a possible deal, initially shocked industry insiders. Under Rupert Murdoch, Fox has long been a swashbuckling builder. Murdoch has never shied away from attempting what once seemed impossible, from launching Fox Broadcasting Co. as the fourth national broadcast network in 1986 to acquiring the Wall Street Journal in 2007 to revving up Fox Sports as a national competitor to ESPN in 2013.

But the sale reflects rising uncertainty about the economics of traditional media outlets as digital technology forces massive change in the way people consume their news, movies and TV programs. In a world of tech giants such as Facebook, Amazon, Apple and Google with global reach, conglomerates like 21st Century Fox became small by comparison, despite the strength of its brands and content-producing expertise.

“With many pressures hitting the media industry, Fox’s potential moves make immense sense,” said media-industry analyst Michael Nathanson in a recent research note. Fox can bank on strong revenue from affiliate fees from its remaining TV assets, and use its sports rights; passionate Fox News views fan base; and big-audience broadcast events for leverage. “Paring down their asset base would not change this hand,” he said.

The decision by the Murdoch to sell comes a little more than two years after Rupert Murdoch handed control of 21st Century Fox to his sons, James and Lachlan. There’s been much speculation about 21st Century Fox CEO James Murdoch moving to a top role at Disney after the sale. Lachlan Murdoch, executive chairman, meanwhile, is expected to remain with the reconfigured 21st Century Fox. Iger said during an interview with ABC’s “Good Morning America” that he and James Murdoch will “be discussing whether there’s a role for him at this company” in the coming months.

For Disney, the acquisition provides new heft, and even gives it more control over some of the content that fuels its business.

Fox owns the studio, for example, that produces the ABC hit “Modern Family.” Now Disney will take control of the program, and benefit from syndication and other distribution of the series. The 20th Century Fox studio has the rights to make movies for Marvel characters like “X-Men” the result of deals struck before Disney purchased Marvel in 2009. Fox also controls rights to the one “Star Wars” film that is not under Disney’s aegis – the first movie in the franchise, “Star Wars: A New Hope.”

More importantly, Disney will gain access to overseas markets with Fox’s interest in Sky. 21st Century Fox has been working for months to purchase the shares of Sky it does not own, but the process has so far been tamped down by British regulators, who have expressed wariness of business operations at Fox News. With that unit remaining with the Murdochs, Disney may have its own opportunity to buy Sky in whole and gain a new perch in overseas distribution.

The deal also gives Disney majority control of Hulu, as Disney also owns a 30% stake in the streaming giant. But that sets up a potential clash over the direction of the company with Comcast and Time Warner, who together own the remaining interest in Hulu. The expectation is that Disney will try to buy out those stakes, although Comcast may not be inclined to sell given that Disney intends to launch its own OTT services to compete with cable and other MVPDs.

Disney will gain ballast in the world of TV programming, by taking on the National Geographic channels, as well as the premium drama and comedy of the FX Networks outlets that have thrived under leader John Landgraf. Disney’s current portfolio of cable networks focuses largely on kids and families, not on the viewers who are buoying operations like HBO, Showtime, AMC and FX. Many of Disney’s networks take only limited advertising. While the larger group of TV networks gives the company more say at the negotiating table with distributors it means the company can tap a broader flow of advertising dollars as well.

The move is not without risk for seller and buyer. Can Fox make a go of things with an early-stage cable-sports operation; two cable networks that aim for a particular broad niche of people with the same political leaning; and a broadcast network that has flailed since the demise of the original “American Idol” in 2016? And will the new properties offset some of the operating troubles Disney has had with its two best-known properties, ESPN and ABC? ESPN remains the king of sports TV, but in recent years it has lost subscribers while under obligations to pay out millions in lucrative rights fees to the nation’s sports leagues. And ABC has struggled to gain a foothold in the ratings, despite the recent success of Shonda Rhimes-produced dramas like “Grey’s Anatomy” and ” How to Get Away With Murder.”

The Disney-Fox deal has prodded chatter that the remaining 21st Century Fox assets will be recombined with News Corp., the publishing side of the Murdoch empire that was split off from the entertainment and media side in 2013. Even as the ink is barely dry on the Disney agreement, already there’s speculation about the Murdochs considering other transactions with its remaining networks.

“The new Fox will draw upon the powerful live news and sports businesses of Fox, as well as the strength of our Broadcast network,” Rupert Murdoch said in a statement. “It is born out of an important lesson I’ve learned in my long career in media: namely, content and news relevant to viewers will always be valuable. We are excited by the possibilities of the new Fox, which is already a leader many times over.”

30 de octubre de 2017

Caribbean Leaders and Cruise Line Executives Discuss the Future of Tourism in the Region

At the 24th annual Florida-Caribbean Cruise Association Conference that was held recently in Merida, Mexico, leaders from several Caribbean countries and representatives from several cruise lines, including Disney, gathered to discuss the area’s recovery from a hurricane season that has devastated the region, and how to prepare for future storms.

Allen Chastenet, Prime Minister of St. Lucia, moderated the session and gave a somewhat grim view of the situation, stating that the area has been neglected for too long and that any rebuilding plans will “amount to nothing unless we wake up and realize how big a step the next step is. It’s going to take a heavy investment and commitment, with private sector participation. Money that’s been appropriated for recovery just scratches the surface of what’s needed. Nobody is thinking of the real numbers.”

Some islands are getting help from other nations. For example St. Martin (St. Maarten), which is a territory of both France and the Netherlands is getting help from both countries. The Virgin Islands and Anguilla, however, are seen as too wealthy to qualify for assistance from Britain.

Independent countries, such as Dominica, are left on their own. The damage there is estimated at 200% of their Gross Domestic Product.

Some areas had used previous hurricanes as learning tools. In 1995 after Hurricane Luis, St. Maarten was without power for months. New power lines were put underground, and after Irma, power was beginning to return within a week, with the country now at 80%. Irma gave Puerto Rico a hint at the devastation that Hurricane Maria would bring, so the country prepared by putting communications in place, plus dispatching workers to hotels and the airport.

Appeals have gone out to the United Nations, the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund to help with the current and future crises, but Chastenet says that, “there is not enough public money available.”

According to Chastenet, the region needs to change its way of thinking and “program for a very different way of life if we’re going to make it sustainable. The lack of investment in the region for the past 15 years is going to come back to haunt us.”

The region is not only struggling to pay for repairs and recovery, but also faces lost revenue from agriculture and tourism.

Carlos Torres de Navarra, Vice President of Commercial Port Operations for Carnival Cruise Line, talked about what needs to happen for ships to be able to return to the area. The first thing that needs to be done, he said, is for ports to provide depth charts to make sure that it’s save for the ships to enter the ports.

Torres de Navarra added that roads and beaches that are need for excursions need to be cleared, the port and shopping areas should receive a cleanup, security should be in place and power restored. Retailers and restaurants need to be ready as well.

Disney Cruise Line currently is avoiding the region through at least mid-December, while Carnival will return in January. Royal Caribbean, however, is expected to return to St. Thomas on November 10th, San Juan, Puerto Rico on November 30th and St. Maarten on December 17th.

Russell Daya, Executive Director of Marine and Port Operations, Development, and Itinerary Planning for Disney Cruise Line points out that the financial loss to the cruise lines may have been painful, but safety is the priority.

Carnival’s Torres de Navarra sums it up, saying “it’s complicated.”

Source: Seatrade Cruise News and The DIS

29 de septiembre de 2017

DisneyVersary 2017 — Disney releases DisneyNow, a new app that combines live TV, on-demand, games and music

Disney’s streaming service may still be years away, but the company this week has launched a new app for streaming Disney’s series, Disney Channel movies, live TV and music all under one roof, with the release of DisneyNow. The app is designed to consolidate Disney’s existing “Watch” streaming apps into one, including Disney Channel, Disney XD, Disney Junior and Radio Disney.

That suite of TV apps, aimed at kids 2 to 14 years old, have been downloaded over 40 million times since 2012, the company says. To some extent, it made sense to keep them as separate properties – after all, what a 2-year old wants to watch will be very different from a young teenager.

But times are changing. While it made sense for each property to have its own space on linear TV, it’s more cumbersome to have multiple apps installed on our devices for access to content from a single provider.

To address this problem, Disney has added personalization features within the new DisneyNow app so kids (or parents) can customize the app to their programming interests. In addition, there’s a “Disney Junior Only” mode that parents can enable if they want to keep the app focused on preschool-appropriate programming.

What’s also interesting about the new app is that it gives you an idea of how Disney’s forthcoming streaming service may work.

In DisneyNow, for example, each user can set up a profile for themselves, and select from over 180 Disney Emoji avatar character poses to associate with their account. Kids can then customize their setup by choosing their favorite characters and shows, and then receive recommendations about what to watch next.

The app will also remember where users left off, so they can resume watching the next time they log in.

And like Disney’s upcoming streaming service has planned, DisneyNow app offers a combination of content – not just shows and movies. There are also games, music, and special performances available, too.

The app will include the ability to watch live, linear TV channels, as well as on-demand, in-season TV shows from its networks, like: “Andi Mack,” “Raven’s Home,” “Bizaardvark,” “Stuck in the Middle,” “Tangled: The Series”; Disney Junior’s “Vampirina,” “Elena of Avalor,” “Mickey and the Roadster Racers,” “The Lion Guard,” “Puppy Dog Pals” and “PJ Masks”; and Disney XD’s “DuckTales,” “Star Wars Rebels,” “Walk the Prank,” “MECH-X4” and “Milo Murphy’s Law.”

A selection of Disney Channel TV movies, curated from over 100 titles, will also be available, along with over 60 games featuring Disney characters, like the “DuckTales” adventure game “Duckburg Quest,” Princess Elena of Avalor in “Flight of the Jaquins” and the Villain Kids in the “Descendants 2 Wicked Style” activity.

Disney says it will release new games to the platform on a monthly basis.

Radio Disney performances and in-studio appearances will be added to this app, as well, including those from Selena Gomez, Ariana Grande and Camila Cabello, and others. The app is ad-supported via sponsorships, traditional or interactive TV commercials and sweepstakes, as there’s no subscription fee to use it.

However, DisneyNow is not an over-the-top streaming service, like the one Disney has planned for its 2019 release, nor will it include any theatrical movies, like those from big brands such as Pixar, Marvel, or Star Wars. Those are being saved for Disney’s big Netflix competitor. (It does have sections for Marvel and Star Wars though, for their TV cartoon series.)

While some content in DisneyNow available for free, to watch the full lineup, users will need to authenticate using their pay TV credentials from a supported cable, satellite or digital programming distributor.

The good news for cord cutters is that DisneyNow does work with your YouTube TV, PlayStation Vue, DirecTV Now, or Hulu credentials.

Of course, you could just watch Disney via those streaming apps’, but it’s better to install the DisneyNow app for the kids, so they don’t have to stumble through adult programming to find their favorite shows.

DisneyNow is a free download on iOS, Apple TV, Android, Fire tablets, and Roku. A version for Fire TV, Android TV and the web will arrive next year.

19 de mayo de 2017

Disneyland Resort Hotels offers summer vacation savings

If you’re planning to visit the Disneyland Resort this summer and enjoy the new, action-packed attraction, Guardians of the Galaxy — Mission: Breakout! inside Disney California Adventure, you might want to consider staying at one of the Disneyland Resort’s three on-property hotels for the ultimate vacation experience, totally enveloped in the magic.

Whether you’re interested in the original Disneyland Hotel, upgraded with the latest modern facilities but infused with nostalgia, or Disney’s Paradise Pier hotel with its view over the iconic Paradise Pier section of the park, or or the arts & crafts style Disney’s Grand California Hotel & Spa you’ll find a a price point to fit your family’s needs. As we’ve reported the Grand Californian is currently in the middle of a hotel-wide renovation which includes new rooms and upgrades to the public areas. The most extensive refurbishment since the hotel’s opening in 2001.

“While each resort hotel offers something unique for guests, what remains consistent is Disney’s exceptional guest service, famed hospitality and of course, magic,” said Elliot Mills, vice president, Hotel Operations, at the Disneyland Resort. “At our three hotels, you are just footsteps from everything, making it easy to play at both theme parks and to explore Downtown Disney. When you extend your stay at the Disneyland Resort, you are sure to create unforgettable memories.”

For a limited time, a special hotel offer is available for guests looking to stay in the middle of the magic. Guests may save up to 20 percent on premium rooms for select nights at Disney’s Grand Californian or the Disneyland Hotel, for travel from now through June 15, 2017, if booked by June 15. Call your authorized Disney travel agent for booking assistance (see below for The Disney Blog’s in house agent details).

Superb Disney Dining and New Experiences

The Hotels of the Disneyland Resort offer delicious dining options for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Guests will find special character dining experiences at each hotel:

Surf’s Up! Breakfast with Mickey & Friends in Disney’s PCH Grill at Disney’s Paradise Pier Hotel
Chip ‘n Dale Critter Breakfast in Storytellers Cafe at Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa
Goofy’s Kitchen at the Disneyland Hotel buzzes with character encounters throughout the day, including the new Disney Dinnertime Magic with Chef Mickey.

Also at the Disneyland Hotel, the vintage Hollywood-inspired Steakhouse 55 recently developed a new menu filled with indulgent breakfast items—and creative cocktails.

In the afternoons, guests will experience Classic Afternoon Tea at Steakhouse 55. The mid-day tea service offers sweets, savories and an exquisite selection of specialty teas. At Disney’s Grand Californian’s signature restaurant, Napa Rose, Disney’s expert staff of sommeliers have curated a special menu during the new Napa Rose Food and Wine Pairing Experience. Offered on weekend afternoons, guests will indulge in hand-selected wine tastings in the lounge.

For delicious dinners in a casual setting, guests will enjoy meals at Disney’s PCH Grill at Disney’s Paradise Pier Hotel and Storytellers Café at Disney’s Grand Californian. Fine dining is available at the award-winning Napa Rose at Disney’s Grand Californian and at Steakhouse 55 in the Disneyland Hotel.
Ideal Daytime Activities

Guests will enjoy sunny summer days at any of the distinct pools found at the on-property hotels. The Disneyland Hotel pool and water play area feature waterslides reminiscent of the original Mark I Monorail trains from Disneyland Park in the early ‘60s. The boardwalk-inspired, rooftop pool at Disney’s Paradise Pier Hotel features a 186-foot slide resembling a classic, beachside roller coaster.

At Disney’s Grand Californian, the recently refreshed pool deck includes new hardscape reinforcing the resort’s Craftsman design. A variety of natural stones were chosen to create a warm and welcoming environment at each pool. The 90-foot-long Redwood Creek waterslide curves around a giant Redwood tree stump, inviting guests to come and splash into the Redwood Pool.

The pools at each of the hotels come to life during energetic afternoon pool parties. These parties throughout the summer include games, music, dancing and more.

Guests who enjoy lounging by the pool may consider reserving a private, poolside cabana, available at the Disneyland Hotel and Disney’s Grand Californian for a half-day or full-day rental. Guests will stretch out under a shaded cabana equipped with everything they need to relax.

Special Evening Experiences

On select summer nights, guests also will enjoy movie screenings at all three hotels. During Magical Night at the Movies, guests are encouraged to kick back on beach chairs and towels to watch a Disney movie under the stars.

Guests with concierge-level reservations may take advantage of evening desserts and after- dinner beverages in the three hotels’ concierge lounges. For guests staying at the Disneyland Hotel, the E-Ticket Club is ideal for viewing the nighttime fireworks spectacular with a corresponding soundtrack piped in throughout the lounge.

Extra Magic Hour at the Theme Parks

Guests also enjoy many extras when they stay at the Hotels of the Disneyland Resort. Registered Disneyland Resort hotel guests with admission tickets may take advantage of Extra Magic Hour, which allows them access to select theme park attractions, stores, entertainment and dining locations for one full hour before the parks open to the general public (available on select mornings; theme park admission and valid hotel key card required**). In addition to being steps away from Disneyland and Disney California Adventure parks, the hotels are a short walk from the eclectic mix of dining, shopping and entertainment features of the Downtown Disney District.

15 de julio de 2016


Known Disney fan Ariana Grande recently celebrated her 23rd birthday, and Teen Vogue ‘grammed an image of the singer from a 2013 photoshoot with the magazine. In it, Grande is lounging in a pink dress while a green chameleon casually sits on her knee.

Una foto publicada por Teen Vogue (@teenvogue) el

Is it just us, or did you immediately think of Rapunzel and Pascal from Tangled, as well?

With their pretty pastel dresses, chameleon confidants, and great hair, we think both Rapunzel and Ariana Grande are Disney Style approved. What do you think of Ariana’s Rapunzel vibes? Tell us in the comments!

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Love It Up News: Season 2 Episode 8: CUTE: Debby Ryan, Dove Cameron and Laura Marano Congratulate Zendaya.

How sweet! Last night after Zendaya picked up a Kid’s Choice Award for Favorite TV Star, her fellow nominees, Debby Ryan, Dove Cameron an...