Bob Iger is pissed.
The guy he hired to be his replacement Yes-Man has stopped saying, “yes.” Bob Chepak is no hero but he is a guy who knows how to cut the fat and it looks like Disney is going on a forced starvation diet.
Disney World is likely going to scale back what is open. And possibly only open its gates five days a week.
They didn’t think through a lot of what would make money and what wouldn’t. Hollywood Studios is bringing the people in but opening EPCOT was a mistake, Future World was already mostly closed for refurbishing. Starting the Fall Food and Wine Festival (while not a bad idea in and of itself) was a huge mistake when they’ve eliminated Park Hopping. If you go to EPCOT that is the only park you can visit and the only thing to do there at the moment is eat at the kiosks. Standing still while you do it. No walking and munching. You stand and eat. That is all you are permitted to do.
Opening Animal Kingdom and immediately shutting down two of its main attractions, (Primeval Whirl and Rivers of Light) plus closing it at 6pm at night killed attendance. It turned the AK into a half-day park (again) and nobody wanted to bother with a half-day park if you can’t park hop. Avatar Flight of Passage is now a walk-on ride and believe me when I say that is freaking nuts.
I don’t claim to have the numbers but I’m willing to bet that at the moment Disney may well be losing more money now that WDW is open than they did when it was closed.
All of Disney Entertainment’s assets are being examined for possible liquidation. And Bob Iger hates it.
His fifteen-year spending spree was his legacy and now the guy who was supposed to be rubber-stamping his orders is clearly thinking for himself. Marvel live-action is currently shelved (and was starting to indulge itself in Woketardery). Star Wars has drastically underperformed against expectations. Even the Muppets haven’t panned out.
But of all of Iger’s pet projects, the one closest to his heart is Shanghai Disneyland. It’s not hard to see why. China wanted to have the best theme park in the world and they were footing the bill. Consequently, the Imagineers were, for once, working with an unlimited budget and it shows.
Next the least impressive ride on this list and it’s still way better than any version in the US parks.
And finally a version of Pirates of the Caribbean that absolutely crushes anything Disney Parks ever did anywhere and I’m including Rise of the Resistance.
And Bob Chapek is thinking of getting rid of it.
According to Disney insiders, there is now a civil war going on in the company. The sides are very clearly drawn between those that want to prioritize things like the reskinning of Splash Mountain and those that want to make the cuts necessary to save the house Walt built.
I’m trying not to be optimistic. Unless you are deliberately getting rid of the Woke they will re-infest any company they get fired from. But at the moment there is unquestionably a need for Disney to get rid of its useless mouths.
I doubt that it will turn Disney around but for the moment I can indulge in a sliver of optimism.
Okay, I’m done here.