Check Out Our New Look

Disney To Open World’s Biggest Store In Shanghai Before Local Theme-Park & Resort

Shanghai’s financial district may soon be better known as the city’s entertainment hub. Robert De Niro and his partners are working on a massive cultural development there while Bruno Wu’s Pinewood Chinawood studio base is also due to be housed in the waterfront Bund area. Today, The Walt Disney Company China said it will open “the world’s largest Disney Store” in Lujiazui, part of the financial district on the east side of Huangpu River in the Pudong area. The store itself will be a 10,800-square-foot space housed on a 53,000 square-foot site that will also host family entertainment events. Disney is building its first mainland China theme park, Shanghai Disneyland, as the the centerpiece of its Shanghai Disney Resort which is targeted to open in Pudong at the end of 2015. Disney said today that the store, which is to open in early 2015, will be “an important site where fans can track the progress of Shanghai Disney Resort.”

Related: Iron Man To The Rescue At Hong Kong Disneyland

Read More »

Comments (2)

Disney’s First Images Of Shanghai Resort

By | Wednesday March 6, 2013 @ 12:31pm PST

The first glimpse of Shanghai Disneyland, the centerpiece of Shanghai Disney Resort, was unveiled earlier today during the company’s annual meeting: 

Walt Disney Company CEO Robert Iger showed off a model of the new theme park centered on the Enchanted Storybook Castle. Under development since 2005, Shanghai Disney reportedly will be three times the size of Disney’s Hong Kong resort. The 963-acre facility will feature the theme park, a 46,000-square-meter retail area, dining and entertainment, two hotels, a lake, recreational facilities, transit hubs and parking. It was also revealed during the meeting that, as part of Disney’s environmental commitment, the facility’s vehicles will run on cooking oil.  Read More »

Comments (6)

Spielberg’s ‘Lincoln’ Closes AFI Fest, Marches Into Oscar Season

Pete Hammond

“It has all been leading up to this night,”  AFI CEO and President Bob Gazzale told me at the Hollywood Roosevelt pre-screening reception for the AFI Fest closing film, the official World Premiere of Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln. It was actually first presented in “unfinished” form at the New York Film Festival, a fact that didn’t bother Gazzale. “We ask the studios ‘how can we help you with your movie? We were thrilled to get it as our closing’,”  he said and felt this was a very big deal. It made nice bookends for the festival that opened with Hitchcock and now was closing with Lincoln.

It was indeed a big deal with virtually the entire principal cast turning out. Daniel Day-Lewis, Sally Field and Tommy Lee Jones as well as Spielberg, screenwriter Tony Kushner and most of the key crew were there. DreamWorks chief Stacey Snider, Participant’s Jim Berk and Jeff Skoll and Disney’s Bob Iger also attended, along with many others.

Spielberg was excited to see the long gestating project finally premiere at the Chinese Theatre. The film, which details Lincoln’s battle with Congress to pass the 13th Amendment abolishing slavery, is ironically relevant to today’s fractured Congressional fights and the director thinks the post-election timing is perfect, especially with looming debates about several hot button issues. “I didn’t want to see this released in front of the election or see it politicized”, Spielberg told me. “I think now it can almost be a kind of cleansing for the country”. Read More »

Comments (3)

Disney’s Robert Iger Nets $26.6M On Sale Of Stock: Bloomberg

By | Saturday May 12, 2012 @ 1:20pm PDT

Walt Disney Co. chairman and CEO Robert Iger this week exercised stock options that netted an estimated $26.6 million in profit, Bloomberg reports. The sale of 1.8 million shares worth $81.6 million took place Thursday, according to an SEC filing, at a cost to Iger of $55 million. The shares sold at an average price of $45.36 per share, yesterday’s closing price. Disney stock closed at a record $45.02 Wednesday after the Mouse outlined plans for a sequel to the studio’s runaway global hit Marvel’s The Avengers during its second-quarter earnings call. Stock climbed to $45.28 Thursday and again yesterday. Iger exercised his options at a cost of roughly $55 million. Iger still has 1.14 million shares with a value Disney said is 400% greater than ownership requirements. Disney is up 21% this year. Even after the stock-option “transactions, his holdings exceed what
Mr. Iger owned at year-end,” according to a Disney statement. The SEC “filing is part of routine financial planning to meet his family’s diversification.”

Disney Announces ‘Avengers 2′ In Development
Disney Tops Fiscal Q2 Earnings Estimates On Boosts From Cable, Theme Parks

Comments (1)


Related: Why Rich Ross Was Fired At Disney: But Does This Say More About Bob Iger’s Leadership?

BREAKING… Below is what fired Walt Disney Studios Chairman Rich Ross just sent to his staff, followed by a statement from Disney Chairman Bob Iger. But make no mistake about it: Ross did not simply decide to step down – he was fired. He was named Chairman of the Walt Disney Studios on October 5, 2009. Previously, he’d been the very successful President of Disney Channels Worldwide overseeing global hits like Hannah Montana and High School Musical. His ouster now ends his 15+ year Disney career which included one of the most public and worst film failures in Hollywood — John Carter, a $200M writedown for the Walt Disney Co:

Disney Rich Ross FiredFor the last 15 years, I have had the opportunity to work with incredibly talented people on behalf of the world’s best loved brand. During that time, we’ve told some amazing stories around the world, created successful TV programming, movies, and franchises that generated new opportunities for the company in the process.

I’ve always said our success is created and driven by our people – whom I consider to be the absolute best in the business. But, the best people need to be in the right jobs, in roles they are passionate about, doing work that leverages the full range of their abilities. It’s one of the leadership lessons I’ve learned during my career, and it’s something I’ve been giving a great deal of thought to as I look at the challenges and opportunities ahead.

I believe in this extraordinary Walt Disney Studios team, and I believe in our strong slate of films and our ability to make and market them better than anyone else.  But, I no longer believe the Chairman role is the right professional fit for me.  For that reason, I have made the very difficult decision to step down as Chairman of The Walt Disney Studios, effective today.

It has been my honor to work with such incredible teams – at Disney Channels Worldwide and The Walt Disney Studios and the many other Disney businesses I’ve had the opportunity to collaborate with. I know I leave the Studios in good hands and, even on separate paths, I am confident we are all destined for continued success.


Statement from Bob Iger, Chairman/CEO, Walt Disney Co

Bob Iger StatementFor more than a decade, Rich Ross’s creative instincts, business acumen and personal integrity have driven results in key businesses for Disney, redefining success in kids and family entertainment and launching  franchises that generate value across our entire company. 

Read More »

Comments 189

Disney Channel To Launch In Russia

Disney announced today it has reached an agreement to launch a free-to-air ad-supported Disney Channel in Russia early next year. The joint venture with media holding company UTH Russia will see UTH’s Seven TV channel become Disney Channel, with Disney owning a 49% stake and UTH 51%. At launch, the network will reach about 40 million households, or about 75% of the measured audience in Russia. It will feature family programming including Disney’s signature shows as well as original Russian content. The move comes after a similar effort by Disney was blocked in 2008; the Wall Street Journal reported that Russian regulators OK’d this one after Disney boss Bob Iger met with Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin. “He endorsed the partners that we’re working with and the strategy,” Iger told the WSJ about the meeting. When it launches, it will be the 101st network in Disney Channels Worldwide’s group that currently reaches 325 million households globally.

Comments (2)

Disney Sets Succession: Board Re-Ups CEO Bob Iger Through 2016 And Adds Chairman Title In 2012; New CEO To Be Named In 2015

By | Friday October 7, 2011 @ 10:19am PDT

BURBANK, Calif. – The Walt Disney Company (NYSE: DIS) Board of Directors announced today it has agreed to extend Robert A. Iger’s contract through June 2016 as part of the Company’s ongoing succession planning. Under the new agreement, effective Oct. 1, Iger will assume the role of chairman in addition to chief executive officer following Chairman John E. Pepper’s retirement from the board at Disney’s 2012 annual shareholder meeting in March. Until then, Iger will remain president and chief executive officer.

Iger will hold the positions of chairman and chief executive officer through March 31, 2015, at which time a new CEO would be named; Iger will thereafter serve as executive chairman for 15 months through June 30, 2016. Iger’s current contract was set to expire on Jan. 31, 2013.

The Disney board took action at this time to secure the benefit of Iger’s leadership through 2016, provide for an effective, seamless succession and management transition and a continuity of the company’s corporate strategy to create long-term value for shareholders.

As provided in the company’s corporate governance guidelines, the board will also select an independent lead director when Iger assumes the role of Chair immediately following the meeting in March.

Read More »

Comments (8)