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Disney cuts 650 jobs, films - USA TODAY 7/19/06


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  • Disney cuts 650 jobs, films - USA TODAY 7/19/06

    Disney confirms staff, movie reductions

    Updated 7/19/2006 12:39 AM ET

    LOS ANGELES (AP) — The Walt Disney Co. is restructuring its studio division to emphasize blockbuster franchise films over more adult fare, a move that will mean slashing 650 jobs worldwide, the company announced Tuesday.
    Among those who will be losing their jobs is Disney's longtime head of live-action production, Nina Jacobsen.

    Disney veteran Oren Aviv, president of marketing and chief creative officer of The Walt Disney Studios, was promoted to president of production.

    The restructuring will cut Disney's film output from about 18 a year to about a dozen. Of those, about 10 will be released under the Walt Disney Pictures banner, a proven family friendly brand that includes the successful Pirates of the Caribbean franchise.
    Disney's Touchstone label, which is responsible for more esoteric fare by artists like Joel and Ethan Coen of Fargo fame, will be cut back to only two or three releases a year. Recent Touchstone films have included the box-office flops The Alamo and The Ladykillers.
    The shift, the company explained, will allow Disney films to bolster the resources of other divisions. A hit like Pirates of the Caribbean, for example, can spawn video games, action figures, cable TV shows and, in the case of Pirates, give new life to an old Disney theme park attraction.

    "When we do it well, the lift it gives to the entire company is so significant," Dick Cook, chairman of Walt Disney Studios, told The Associated Press.
    Disney also is consolidating its domestic and international marketing, distribution and home video efforts, the company said Tuesday.
    The shift to more Disney-branded films has been expected for some time, as have staff cutbacks resulting from a cut in the total number of films.

    Surprising, though was the loss of Jacobsen, who has been head of live-action production for more than a decade.
    "Sometimes these things just happen," Cook said. "She is a fantastic executive, very talented, great taste, very smart."
    "If you don't know how to draw, you don't belong in this building" - John Lasseter 2006

  • #2
    Re: Disney cuts 650 jobs, films - USA TODAY 7/19/06

    I just hope they continue to put out family films!!! I know that films like 8 Below weren't huge hits, but at least I could take my boys to it and not worry about questionable scenes.
    Will trade husband for Disneyland and DCA Pins!


    • #3
      Re: Disney cuts 650 jobs, films - USA TODAY 7/19/06

      family films are in again. they just want to make them more like pirates and less like sky high. but if they aren't careful they will have more alamo's and pearl harbor's on their hands.


      • #4
        Re: Disney cuts 650 jobs, films - USA TODAY 7/19/06

        Originally posted by Cmash95
        but if they aren't careful they will have more alamo's and pearl harbor's on their hands.
        I'm fairly sure they'd take another "disappointment" like 'Pearl Harbor' down the road...
        Worldwide: $449,220,945 not counting home entertainment, etc. revenue as well.
        "If you don't know how to draw, you don't belong in this building" - John Lasseter 2006


        • #5
          Re: Disney cuts 650 jobs, films - USA TODAY 7/19/06

          More PG13 "family fare" I can't take my little kids to see.

          Pirate's is a bit of a fluke in that like "Star Wars", revived a dead genre and unlike "Star Wars" had a 30 year awareness based on the ride. It's ironic that they are downscaling touchstone that was the label that got them back into the business with Down and Out in Beverly Hills, Ruthless People, Sister Act, Tin Men and others in a seemingly endless string of hits.
          Having said that, I'd like to see them make the Disney brand relevant.
          "As usual he's taken over the coolest spot in the house"- Father re: Orville 1963

          [FONT=Arial Narrow]


          • #6
            Re: Disney cuts 650 jobs, films - USA TODAY 7/19/06

            What a difference 22 years make. When Micheal Eisner took over Disney in 1984, movie production shifted from family fare to a broader range of mass appeal films made on a tight budget. Not all of them were memorable, but they were hugely profitable.

            Fast forward to the Bob Iger era and Disney will make fewer films, but apparently more tentpole movies that will synergize with its other entertainment and consumer products divisions. Advertising/media overkill? I think POTC answers that question. But there's no denying that Disney is back in the business of making "event" movies like in Walt's heyday. The emphasis on creativity is back and that's pretty exciting.
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