Saturday, January 29, 2005

Disney Annual Report Review

As a Disney Shareholder, I get the Annual Report every year and I'm always intrigued by the tidbits of information I find buried in the document. Here are the interesting things I found in the 2004 Annual Report:

Parks. Disney operates 5 of the Top 10 most popular family attractions in the U.S. To celebrate the 50th anniversary of Disneyland in California, they are rolling out a very aggressive set of new rides and a new park in 2005, including:

  • Disney Hong Kong, the massive new park built on reclaimed land and first park in China (opens September 12), including a planned Art Deco-style Hollywood Hotel
  • Raging Spirits, a new ride at Disney Tokyo
  • Sourin', a new ride at Epcot (copied from California Adventure)
  • Extreme Stunt Show, a new attraction at Disney-MGM Studios (copies from Disney Paris)
  • Astro-Blasters, a new ride at Disneyland (copied from Disney Tokyo)
  • Wishes, a new fireworks show at Disney Paris
  • Expedition Everest, a massive thrill ride under construction at Animal Kingdom (no firm open date yet)
  • Updates and implementation of new technologies at Space Mountain and Haunted Mansion at Disneyland
  • An on-line "virtual Magic Kingdom" where guests can experience Disney theme parks from home by visiting attractions as an avatar

Movies. Lots of films from Disney, Dimension, Miramax, Touchstone and Hollywood Films:

  • Chicken Little, the first digital release as they move to fill the digital cartoon hole in their slate with the ending of the Disney-Pixar agreement
  • Cars, the final Pixar film
  • The Pacifier (Vin Diesel, spring)
  • Sin City (Bruce Willis)
  • Cursed (Christina Ricci)
  • Casanova (Heath Ledger, Christmas)
  • Sky High (Kurt Russell, Kelly Preston, summer)
  • Hitchikers Guide to the Galaxy (May)
  • Flight Plan (Jodie Foster)
  • Ice Princess (Michelle Trachtenberg, March)
  • The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe (all seven Chronicles of Narnia books in one film, Christmas)
  • Herbie Fully Loaded (Lindsay Lohan, summer)

TV, Video, and Games. Trying to follow up on the popularity of Lost and Desperate Housewives:

  • Muppets' Wonderful Wizard of Oz TV movie (spring)
  • Bambi, The Incredibles, National Treasure, King Arthur, The Village and Mulan 2 to be released on DVD
  • Video game titles based on the films The Nightmare Before Christmas, Chicken Little, Tron 2.0, and Chronicles of Narnia.
  • 22nd Disney Channel premiered in Japan and Disney Channel India on the way
  • ESPN and ESPN2 will be broadcasting at least 6,000 hours of programming in HD
  • JETIX, a new boys-oriented TV channel

Other. Disney bought Baby Einstein (toys, clothing) and the entire Muppets empire in 2004 and will roll out related movies and merchandise; the Disney Cruise Ship Magic will be moving to the West Coast for 12 weeks of cruises before returning to the East Coast; Peter and the Starcatchers, Disney Fairies, and more Disney Princess merchandise will be released; and a stage version of Mary Poppins premiered in London.


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