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Tag Archives: Walt Disney Company

September 20

September 20, 2011 – Disney Announces Joint Partnership with Lightstorm Entertainment

“…Disney will partner with Cameron and producing partner Jon Landau to create themed lands that will give theme park guests the opportunity to explore the mysterious universe of AVATAR first hand.”

On September 20, 2011, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Worldwide announced that they had entered into a partnership with James Cameron’s Lightstorm Entertainment, along with Fox Filmed Entertainment. This exclusive agreement would give Disney the rights to create a new park based on Cameron’s blockbuster film Avatar. It was also announced that the Avatar-themed land would be added to Disney’s Animal Kingdom in Walt Disney World, with construction beginning in 2013. This agreement also gives Disney the opportunity to build other Avatar lands in other Disney Parks around the world.

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August 24

August 24, 1994 – Jeffrey Katzenberg Steps Down as Head of Walt Disney Studios

“With heartfelt thanks and obvious regret, I wish him well in his future endeavors.” – Walt Disney Company CEO Michael Eisner

On August 24, 1994, Jeffery Katzenberg, the head of Walt Disney Studios, announced that he had resigned from his position. Although this had caught most of Hollywood by surprise, Katzenberg’s position at Disney had been up in the air since the passing of President of the Walt Disney Company, Frank Wells; there had been some obvious tension between Katzenberg and CEO Michael Eisner, who had refused to promote Katzenberg to Wells’ position. Although Katzenberg had helped to make Disney one of the most profitable studios of the era, the profitability came at a cost. It was announced that Joe Roth, the former chairman of 20th Century Fox, would be taking Katzenberg’s position.

July 28

July 28, 1993 – Bank of America Ends Partnership with Disneyland

“…Walt was confident of his vision [of Disneyland], and so was Bank of America.”

On July 28, 1993, the company Bank of America cease their association with Disneyland Park. The bank had been a part of the theme park since the park’s opening, as a branch was located on Main Street. The bank was also unique in that it was one of the few banks in the country to have regular Sunday and holiday hours. The association between Disney and Bank of America goes back even earlier than 1955; Bank of America financed Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, which began a long relationship of the bank continuing to finance animated feature films for the company. Bank of America also sponsored the it’s a small world attraction from 1966 to 1992, with the sponsorship also advertising the company’s first modern credit card BankAmericard; this card was the first credit card to be accepted at the Magic Kingdom.

July 25

July 25, 2007 – Disney Announces Discouragement of Smoking in Films

“We discourage depictions of cigarette smoking in Disney, Touchstone, and Miramax films.” – Disney President and CEO Robert A. Iger

On July 25, 2007, The Walt Disney Company made an official announcement that they will no longer depict smoking in any of their films. In a letter sent to U.S. Representative Edward J. Markey, Chairman of the House Telecommunications and the Internet Subcommittee, Disney President and CEO Bob Iger wrote that the company will not only prevent depictions of smoking in films, but will also place an anti-smoking ad on any DVD release of a film that features cigarette smoking. Although the company had made this direction known since 2004, this was the first official announcement of the company’s intent.

May 21

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May 21, 1928 – Walt Disney Files to Trademark Mickey Mouse

On May 21, 1928, Walt Disney Enterprises officially filed with the United States Patent Office, looking to trademark Mickey Mouse. After Walt lost ownership of Oswald the Lucky Rabbit, Walt Disney Enterprises was certain that they would never face a similar situation. The trademark was called a “name mark,” which protects the character against similar names and similar logos. Anything that was considered too similar to Mickey Mouse, even changing one letter of the name, would infringe on Disney’s rights. This was the one of the first of many trademarks that would be filed by the Walt Disney Company.

April 2

April 2, 1940 – The First Sales of Disney Common Stock are Offered

On April 2, 1940, the first common stocks of Walt Disney Productions were offered to the public. The offerings were released with 6% cumulative convertible preferred shares; common stock offerings were about $5 a share (almost $89 when adjusted for inflation). The sales of stocks went on to raise $3.5 million for the company. On November 12, 1957, the company would be listed on the New York Stock Exchange.

March 24

March 24, 2014 – Disney Buys Maker Studios

“Mickey Mouse became a YouTube giant on Monday.”

On March 24, 2014, the Walt Disney Company announced that it had completed a deal to acquire the YouTube-based video supplier Maker Studios for $500 million. The acquisition deal also includes a stipulation that Disney would pay an additional $450 million if the aggressive growth targets are met. Disney’s acquisition was mainly about expanding its distribution and programming channels, as Maker manages over 50,000 YouTube channels, including Epic Rap Battles of History and PewDiePew. There were concerns over the acquisition, as analysts believe that Maker operates in the red due to its proceeds coming from ads across their channels. However, Disney will operate the studio under the financial area of the company until it is ready to serve the other business units.