Disney Flushes Fox Film Development, ‘Redirects’ Strategy After Big Q3 Loss

Variety | 8/6/2019 | Matt Donnelly
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Disney has confirmed that big changes are coming to the Fox film division, including word that Marvel Studios head Kevin Feige is inheriting Fox’s comic book heroes like the X-Men franchise.

Disney is also axing the majority of the existing Fox film development slate and refocusing output, after the studio posted a $170 million operating loss in Disney’s fiscal third quarter.

Disney - CEO - Bob - Iger - Wall

Disney CEO Bob Iger told Wall Street analysts on Tuesday during Disney’s quarterly earnings call that the Fox’s superhero titles would move forward under the stewardship of Feige. In addition, the company’s streaming platform Disney Plus will get four big brands from Fox to adapt as straight-to-service content. Those include the Macaulay Culkin holiday franchise “Home Alone,” the historical action romp “Night at the Museum,” the family comedy “Cheaper by the Dozen” and the live-action “The Diary of a Wimpy Kid.”

It’s likely not a coincidence that those properties come from deep in the Fox film vault. Disney chief financial officer Christine McCarthy revealed Fox film was at an operating loss of $170 million for the quarter, and that the division was one of several recently acquired assets to come in “well under our expectations.” In the same quarter last year, Disney estimated that Fox’s film unit generated $180 million in operating income.

Disney - Performance - Dark - Phoenix - Flop

Disney pinned this on the performance of “Dark Phoenix,” a flop that represented the latest chapter in the X-Men franchise as fans knew it, which only grossed $65 million domestic on a $200 million budget (overseas grosses were kinder, to the tune of $186 million). Losses were also attributed to marketing costs on upcoming titles (like “Ford v. Ferrari,” which was the only...
(Excerpt) Read more at: Variety
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