Best Disney Links for December 2020
The Walt Disney Company just experienced one of its most dramatic months ever.
The Monday Morning Quarterbacks are out in force to discuss what everything means.
We’ll take a look at the highlights in the latest batch of Disney links for December 2020.
The massive news this month involves Disney’s fundamental change to its core brand.
Back in 1937, Walt Disney conquered Hollywood with Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.
At the time, he worked to build an empire in the entertainment industry, especially in the film industry.
Disney also utilized the other popular medium at the time, radio, to teach children the joys of his characters.
A famous example was The Mickey Mouse Theater of the Air, which mirrored the release of Snow White.
Once television evolved into a powerful distribution model, Disney pivoted and has attained/sustained a powerful presence in that marketplace.
The switch to a streaming model brings Disney back to its origins, which makes the change so intriguing to analysts.
During Investor Day, Bob Chapek fully committed his company to streaming, introducing several new projects.
IndieWire correctly summarized the four-hour presentation as Disney telling movie theaters that they’re middlemen, a point I’ve made many times.
These film theaters we’ve loved since we were children don’t make any products of their own. Instead, they sell someone else’s product.
Until now, Disney has treated these middlemen as a vital component, but that has changed.
Here’s a list of all the projects Disney just announced/confirmed. You can’t help but notice the sheer volume of valuable intellectual properties.
Over the past 15 years, Bob Iger methodically purchases these IPs, and Disney+ is where the company will maximize the value.
To its credit, Deadline had suggested this possibility last month. Even they were surprised by the scope of the change, though.
First and foremost, Disney is a streaming service now.
The Finances of Disney
Obviously, this chance comes with dramatic ramifications for all things Mickey Mouse.
Chapek possesses plenty of financial incentive to make the change.
An analyst at Seeking Alpha suggests that the absolute minimum Disney will net from its 2024 streaming services is $9.3 billion.
Should the company raise prices by $3 over the next three years, which frankly feels likely, that profit increases $24.3 billion.
As a point of clarification, I’m not talking revenue here. I mean actual profit.
For fiscal 2019, Disney’s most lucrative earnings year ever, the entire company claimed net income of $10.4 billion.
Streaming is where the money’s at these days, and Wall Street knows it. As such, Investor Day stood out as the talk of the corporate world for the week.
Plenty of analysts chimed in with their thoughts, which CNBC thoughtfully collated for the rest of us.
One vaunted analyst, Lauren Martin, went so far as to state that Disney has already surpassed Netflix as the leader in streaming content.
I’m not ready to go that far yet but…wow!
The decision has drawn some interesting takes. Abigail Disney, whose grandfather co-founded the company, laments the reliance on IP.
She believes that a creative should run the company and doesn’t view Chapek that way.
Others lamented that they missed out on Disney’s record-breaking 2020, a statement I cannot believe I’m typing.
Yes, during a pandemic that has shut down many core businesses, the stock has increased more than ever.
What’s Next for Disney?
Part of the growth stems from promises that Disney may not keep.
In fact, some analysts have downgraded the stock as the company enters the hard part. It’s a fair evaluation of the struggles that lie ahead.
Remarkably, some loyalists triggered a rally BEFORE Investor Day, showing tremendous faith in Team Chapek.
They were rewarded with tremendous short-term profit. And they have more earning opportunities.
Benzinga believes that Disney stock could reach $250 by 2022!
More than 65 percent of Benzinga traders stated in a survey that they expect that to happen.
Of course, 2021 will determine that. The Motley Fool has published three expectations for Disney in the coming year.
I think that the first two are sure to happen, and the third is already underway.
Of course, the first one is happening, too. Just this past week, Disney altered some of its loading protocols to increase throughput.
In a first-of-its-kind collaboration, Disney Animation and Pan-African entertainment company Kugali will team up to create an all-new, science fiction series coming to #DisneyPlus in 2022: Iwájú. Check out a first look at visual development art from the series. pic.twitter.com/9iuWFDr61T
— Disney Animation (@DisneyAnimation) December 11, 2020
The company has also signed up for a new collaboration with three gifted Nigerian and Ugandan writers, another strong step forward with representation.
Meanwhile, the film division will continue to tie theme park attractions to movies. There’s even a Space Mountain sci-fi epic in pre-production!
Disney’s also keeping Lin-Manuel Miranda’s plate full, as he’ll create the music for Encanto.
However, some analysts worry that some of Disney’s moves lack innovation. My old friend, Scott Mendelson, frets over the future of the Star Wars franchise.
Disney Fun for the Month
We also had several fun stories this month. I’ll start with the one that’ll help you win your holiday dinner.
Disney kindly provided the recipe from one of its most popular desserts.
If you’ve spent time at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge, you know about the Molasses Crackle Cookies. We’re totally trying this for New Year’s.
WFLA reported undoubtedly the weirdest and most reprehensible Disney story of the month.
Yes, an Orlando family faked a ministry in order to claim Paycheck Protection Program money. They somehow received $8.4 million.
Everything went wrong when the greedy family tried to buy its way into Disney’s Golden Oak neighborhood.
Something didn’t add up, and the feds got involved. They are going to jail, y’all.
The recent story that amuses me the most comes from TikTok. Users there have, for no apparent reason, started work on a Ratatouille musical.
Since Ratatouille is top three Pixar for me, I’m loving this collaborative experiment.
Speaking of oddities, another Forbes writer has calculated something fascinating. He’s determined the value of Disney Princess jewelry.
Poor Snow White really needs to upgrade her jewelry drawer.
The other weird update this month comes from Kansas City. You can work in the office where Walt Disney invented Mickey Mouse! So, that’s a thing.
Finally, let’s close out the month with a couple of controversial lists. Here are ten Disney shows that the writer believes didn’t age well.
And here are five ways that Mickey Mouse is Disney’s best character.
That doesn’t sound controversial, does it? Well, the author also adds five reasons for Donald Duck!
Okay, that’s everything for 2020. Let’s all have a much better year in 2021, okay?