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BUSINESS
June 1, 2012 | By Dawn C. Chmielewski, Los Angeles Times
In naming film veteran Alan Horn to oversee its troubled movie studio, Walt Disney Co. has tapped an executive who nurtured the blockbuster "Harry Potter" franchise and could bring magic back to the studio that once controlled the family film market. The former Warner Bros. Entertainment president takes over as Walt Disney Studios chairman June 11, assuming control of the Burbank company whose 1937 "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs" heralded a golden age of animated movies and made Mickey Mouse, Ariel and the Lion King an indelible part of the American childhood.
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BUSINESS
April 24, 2014 | By Hugo Martin
It's a Small World, the 50-year-old Disneyland attraction with the singing automatonic children, is reportedly being turned into a movie. Deadline.com reported that Jon Turteltaub has been hired by Walt Disney Studios to direct the movie based on the attraction, with writer Jared Stern on board to write the script. Turteltaub has worked with Disney before, directing the two "National Treasure" films staring Nicolas Cage, and "The Kid" starring Bruce Willis. Most recently, he directed "Last Vegas" with Robert De Niro, Michael Douglas and Morgan Freeman.
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BUSINESS
October 10, 2010 | Dawn C. Chmielewski and Claudia Eller
Rich Ross, the television executive who helped revive the moribund Disney Channel, now has to prove he can work movie magic at Walt Disney Studios. The 47-year-old former talent department head has been, as expected, tapped by Disney Chief Executive Robert A. Iger to fill much of the studio post formerly held by Dick Cook, who was ousted last month after clashing with his boss and failing to deliver enough hits over the last year. Iger will look to Ross to reinvigorate Disney's flagging box-office fortunes and develop film franchises that can be sold across the entertainment giant's lines of businesses -- including theme parks, consumer products and television -- as well as grapple with a host of technological issues that are quickly reshaping Hollywood.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 6, 2014 | Daniel Miller and Julie Makinen
Beijing-based film production company Huayi Brothers Media Corp. plans to invest up to $150 million in a new movie company from Jeff Robinov, the former president of Warner Bros. Pictures Group. The deal would be one of the highest-profile partnerships between Chinese and Hollywood film entities. Robinov departed Warner Bros. in the summer of 2013 after leading Hollywood's biggest movie studio since 2007.  Huayi Brothers said in a statement that it would invest $120 million to $150 million in Robinov's Studio 8, and distribute the company's movies in China.
BUSINESS
April 26, 2012 | By Ben Fritz, Los Angeles Times
Once considered one of the most powerful and sought-after positions in Hollywood, running Walt Disney Studios - the 89-year-old Burbank institution behind "Snow White," "Mary Poppins" and "Pirates of the Caribbean" - now seems about as desirable as playing Goofy on a hot day at Disneyland. But since Walt Disney Co. Chief Executive Bob Iger fired his studio head Rich Ross last week, the buzz in Hollywood has been less about who's angling for the studio chairman job and more about who would want it. The reason: Iger's strategy of turning Disney into a collection of brands means that most of the films it releases are not overseen or greenlighted by the movie studio chief, as they are at rival companies.
BUSINESS
July 4, 2013 | By Daniel Miller
In Walt Disney Studios' remake of "The Lone Ranger," the masked lawman and his loopy sidekick, Tonto, stop a runaway train, are beaten by bad guys and besieged by scorpions, and blow up a massive bridge with dynamite - all while trying to avenge the death of the Lone Ranger's brother and save his wife and child. The stakes for the studio might be even higher. Disney is making a big bet on a character that is largely unfamiliar to the young moviegoers who are the key demographic for big summer movies.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 10, 2013 | By Susan King
On Oct. 16, 1923, Walt Disney and his brother Roy began the Walt Disney Co. inauspiciously in the rear of a small office at the Holly-Vermont Realty in Los Angeles. It was there that the young brothers, who paid $10 a month for the modest space, began producing their live action/animated series of shorts known as the "Alice Comedies. " Ninety years later, Walt Disney Animation Studios is a slightly larger and more lucrative operation. Its 53rd animated feature, "Frozen," just knocked "The Hunger Games: Catching Fire" off its box office pedestal and has brought in more than $134 million domestically since its opening on Nov. 22. And the new animated short that plays in theaters with "Frozen," called "Get a Horse!
BUSINESS
September 19, 2009 | Dawn C. Chmielewski, Claudia Eller and Ben Fritz
With all the signs of a classic Hollywood shake-up, Dick Cook, the longtime head of Walt Disney Studios, abruptly left the company Friday afternoon after 38 years. The news, which came just as offices were emptying out for the weekend, stunned the entertainment industry for its suddenness, even as it revealed a rift between Cook and Disney Chief Executive Robert A. Iger. The studio has had an uneven box-office performance and has been struggling creatively. It lost money in its most recent financial quarter.
BUSINESS
May 6, 2009 | Claudia Eller and Dawn C. Chmielewski
Walt Disney Co. is poised to release "Up," another anticipated hit from Pixar Animation Studios. Studio brass hope the same will be true of the movie division's next quarterly earnings. Rather than attribute Disney Studios' dismal results to the weak global economy, Chief Executive Robert A. Iger bluntly put the blame on Burbank's doorstep. The studio's operating income plummeted 97% in the company's second fiscal quarter to $13 million, down from $377 million a year earlier.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 25, 2014 | By Daniel Miller
After eschewing UltraViolet, a technology standard backed by its main movie business competitors, Burbank-based Walt Disney Co. has launched a proprietary cloud-based movie service that gives users online access to their digital and physical Disney movie purchases.  Disney Movies Anywhere launched Tuesday and is available on Apple iOS devices including the iPhone, iPad and Apple TV. It acts as a so-called "digital movie locker," allowing users...
ENTERTAINMENT
February 26, 2014 | By Daniel Miller
With the launch of a new cloud-based movie service from Walt Disney Co., the marketplace of Web-based movie services just got more crowded and possibly confusing for consumers. After eschewing UltraViolet, a technology standard backed by its main movie business competitors, Burbank-based Walt Disney Co. has debuted Disney Movies Anywhere, a proprietary service that gives users online access to their digital and physical Disney movie purchases. Disney Movies Anywhere launched Tuesday and is available on Apple iOS devices including the iPhone, iPad and Apple TV. Users can also stream films by logging into the Disney Movies Anywhere website.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 25, 2014 | By Daniel Miller
After eschewing UltraViolet, a technology standard backed by its main movie business competitors, Burbank-based Walt Disney Co. has launched a proprietary cloud-based movie service that gives users online access to their digital and physical Disney movie purchases.  Disney Movies Anywhere launched Tuesday and is available on Apple iOS devices including the iPhone, iPad and Apple TV. It acts as a so-called "digital movie locker," allowing users...
ENTERTAINMENT
December 10, 2013 | By Susan King
On Oct. 16, 1923, Walt Disney and his brother Roy began the Walt Disney Co. inauspiciously in the rear of a small office at the Holly-Vermont Realty in Los Angeles. It was there that the young brothers, who paid $10 a month for the modest space, began producing their live action/animated series of shorts known as the "Alice Comedies. " Ninety years later, Walt Disney Animation Studios is a slightly larger and more lucrative operation. Its 53rd animated feature, "Frozen," just knocked "The Hunger Games: Catching Fire" off its box office pedestal and has brought in more than $134 million domestically since its opening on Nov. 22. And the new animated short that plays in theaters with "Frozen," called "Get a Horse!
ENTERTAINMENT
December 6, 2013 | By Ryan Faughnder
Walt Disney Studios has bought the marketing and distribution rights for future movies in the "Indiana Jones" franchise from Paramount Pictures, the companies said Friday.  This gives Disney control over the future of the series, adding to the ownership rights it acquired when it bought Lucasfilm in in 2012 and clearing the way for the studio to make more "Indiana Jones" movies if it chooses to do so.  Disney declined to comment on the future...
ENTERTAINMENT
December 1, 2013 | By Jessica Gelt
The holiday box office exploded this weekend as both "The Hunger Games: Catching Fire" and "Frozen" topped records held by "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone" for the biggest three-day and five-day Thanksgiving weekend grosses. Generating a studio-estimated $66.7-million, three-day gross and $93 million, five-day gross (films opened Wednesday evening in time for the holiday, instead of the usual Thursday evening) Disney's "Frozen" also marked the biggest Thanksgiving-weekend opening ever, beating three-day and five-day records set in 1999 by "Toy Story 2. " Meanwhile, in its second week in wide release, Lionsgate's "Catching Fire" -- a dystopian thriller about children pitted against each other in a fight to the death -- continued its box-office rampage, pulling in domestically a studio-estimated $74.5 million over three days and $110.2 million over five days, and a jaw-dropping worldwide gross of $573 million.
ENTERTAINMENT
November 22, 2013 | By Daniel Miller
Pixar Animation Studios has laid off an undisclosed number of people at its Emeryville, Calif., headquarters due to the delay of its forthcoming film "The Good Dinosaur. " The layoffs affect less than 5% of the company's 1,200-person workforce, according to a source close to the studio. In September, "The Good Dinosaur" was pushed back from its original release date of May 30, 2014, to Nov. 25, 2015. About a month before the project was delayed, the studio, a unit of Walt Disney Studios, removed  director Bob Peterson from the project.
NEWS
November 5, 2013 | By Brady MacDonald
During a recent visit to Paris I made my first pilgrimage to a Disney theme park outside the United States.  For years I have been reading about the majestic beauty of the Magic Kingdom-style park at Disneyland Paris, the dysfunctional violation of all things Disney that is Walt Disney Studios next door and the promise of what the future holds for both parks. TOP 10: Disneyland Paris | Walt Disney Studios So let's step back for a moment and take a long, hard look at what's right, wrong and next at the two theme parks serving as Disney's European outpost in France.
ENTERTAINMENT
November 11, 2013 | By David Ng
They're going to have to find a lot of words that rhyme with "inconceivable. " "The Princess Bride" -- the much-beloved 1987 movie directed by Rob Reiner -- will be turned into a major stage production from Disney, the company announced Monday. No dates or cities have been announced for the planned theatrical piece, which appears to be in the early stages of development. Disney didn't say if the production will be a musical or a play, describing the project as a "new theatrical work.
ENTERTAINMENT
November 10, 2013 | By Amy Kaufman
With its god of thunder "Thor" lighting up the box office this weekend, Marvel has struck again at the multiplex. The 3-D sequel "Thor: The Dark World" debuted with a healthy $86 million, according to an estimate from Marvel distributor Walt Disney Studios. That's the fourth-highest opening of the year, but well behind another Marvel property, "Iron Man 3," whose $174-million debut is still the biggest of 2013. Heading into the weekend, prerelease audience surveys suggested the comic book adaptation would debut with a minimum of $90 million -- and given strong early interest, even a $100-million launch didn't appear impossible.
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