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MyWallSt's First-Ever​ Special Edition Disney Five On Friday!!! 🐭🐭

Here at MyWallSt, we are big fans of Disney, and many of our employees hold long positions in the House of Mouse. This week, we decided to bring you a very special Five On Friday edition, covering all the biggest stories from Disney’s annual D23 Expo in Anaheim last weekend.


The Five On Friday is our weekly newsletter covering the investing world's top stories. If you want to subscribe for more great content, simply sign up here!


#MarvelousNews

Marvel had plenty to show at Disney's annual D23 Expo in Anaheim last weekend, proving that the cinematic juggernaut shows no signs of slowing down.


What does this mean?

Being one of Disney’s flagship products, Marvel took center stage at this year's expo. With ‘Avengers: Endgame’ becoming the highest-grossing movie of all time, bringing in almost $3 billion at the box-office, Disney unsurprisingly has a lot more plans to wring some dollars out of the Marvel universe. Upcoming teased releases include a number of Disney+ exclusive Marvel spin-offs as well as a new lineup of feature films, including ‘The Eternals’, the hotly anticipated ‘Black Widow’ Prequel, and of course ‘Black Panther 2’, who’s predecessor grossed over $1 billion in the box-office and featured the first superhero movie led by a black actor. Considering Marvel’s place as the highest-grossing franchise of all time and calculating the average gross per film, one can estimate that these movies may bring in close to $2.9 billion.


Bet you didn’t know

The Marvel Cinematic Universe has grossed over $22.5 billion dollars in total since 2008, which is an average of $978 million per movie.


#PixarJourney

Disney’s premier animation studio revealed its plans at D23 following a controversial year for its leadership.


What does this mean?

In the year since D23 2018, Pixar studios underwent a significant staffing change at the very top, with the head of Pixar and Disney Animation, John Lasseter, leaving the company under a cloud of controversy and allegations of inappropriate behavior. Its new leadership comes in the form of Pete Docter who was appointed as Lasseter's successor in June. Docter took the lead for Pixar in Anaheim this year while remaining tight-lipped regarding some of the studio’s biggest projects. Pixar will launch two original films on the back of a very successful conclusion to the ‘Toy Story’ franchise this summer, which grossed over $1 billion at the box office. The first of these releases will be the long-awaited ‘Onward’, starring Marvel heroes Tom Holland and Chris Pratt, followed by the previously unknown Jamie Foxx-led ‘Soul’, which is being coined as a spiritual sequel to 2015 Pixar hit ‘Inside Out’. Despite staffing issues, Pixar enjoyed a solid year considering the loss of a long-time creative leader.


Bet you didn’t know

Late Apple co-founder Steve Jobs bought Pixar for $5 million on Feb. 3, 1986, the equivalent of roughly $11.3 million in 2018.


#StarHotel

Disney finally unveiled details of its new ‘Star Wars Hotel’, but it isn’t what you might think.


What does this mean?

Ever since Disney’s acquisition of Lucasfilm in 2012, there have been rumors of a space-themed resort and Disney has now revealed that it will be opening a Star Wars hotel like no other. Based in Disney’s Orlando theme park, the ‘hotel’ is actually a 2-day cruise which drops visitors into a completely self-contained world within a ‘spaceship’. Once aboard the ‘ship,’ visitors become part of a narrative involving other passengers, crew members and cast members dressed as franchise characters. The cruise will take 2 days and fully involves its guests in the Star Wars universe. No opening date or price has been set yet, but Disney will surely look to ride the hype-train which will inevitably follow from this year's upcoming Star Wars film. For the 2018 fiscal year, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts had an operating profit of $4.5 billion, an increase of more than 100% from five years earlier, and it will hope to continue this trend with the ‘Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser’.


Bet you didn’t know

Disney World is the size of San Francisco, or two Manhattans, but a third of its land in Orlando, Florida is designated as a conservation area.


#LucasFilm

Keeping things in a galaxy far, far away, Lucasfilm had a lot to reveal in its D23 cinematic release lineup.


What does this mean?

Lucasfilm head Kathleen Kennedy had a lot of exciting news to get through during her D23 slot over the weekend, with the promotion of its upcoming conclusion to the 42-year old Star Wars Saga: ‘The Rise of Skywalker’, which many expect to challenge ‘Avengers: Endgame’ for the highest-grossing title. Lucasfilm also revealed more footage of its first live-action TV show, ‘The Mandalorian’ which will be the company’s maiden production on the upcoming Disney+ streaming platform. There was a huge announcement in the confirmation of an upcoming series revolving around fan favorite, Obi-Wan Kenobi, which will see Ewan McGregor reprise his role as the main protagonist. Although it may have enjoyed financial success, Lucasfilm’s creative decisions have been criticized heavily by fans, following the divisive ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ in 2017, and 2018’s ‘Solo’ flop (it was a flop by Star Wars standards). Much of the blame has been laid at the feet of Kennedy, but the legendary studio appears to be back on track, having won over audiences at this year's exposition.


Bet you didn’t know

Star Wars creator George Lucas was at Disneyland on opening day, July 17th, 1955. 




#AndFinally

You’re probably sick of hearing about Disney’s upcoming streaming service, Disney+, which looks to overtake Netflix as the biggest name in the direct-to-device entertainment market. However, the service, which will launch on November 12, was offered to attendees at the conference at a discount price, which would save them $69 dollars over a 3-year subscription. Hundreds of fans found themselves lining up for hours in order to take up Disney’s offer. The official D23 website also made the same offer available to online members, but demand was so high that the website crashed on Tuesday, and did not come back online for several hours. It’s clear that Disney means business with its new service, and with so much original content to work with, it really does look like a challenger to the streaming throne.


What does this mean?

2019 will no doubt be remembered by many as the year that Disney disrupted the entertainment industry in its quest to possibly become the biggest entertainment company in the business.


Bet you didn’t know

The name 'D23' refers to D for Disney and 23 for 1923—the year Walt Disney founded the company.


The Week In Numbers


7

out of the 10 highest-grossing movies of all time are owned by Disney.


$2.5 billion

is how much Disney expect to spend on original streaming content by 2025.


$4.8 billion

is how much Disney has made from its $4.05 billion acquisition of Lucasfilm in less than 4 years.


The Takeaway

There is simply too much news from Disney’s biggest event of the year to cover everything. The main takeaway is that Disney shows no signs of slowing down in a year where it has blown away all box-office records, and we still have 4 months to go. Currently sitting with $8 billion dollars made at the box-office, 6 movies which grossed over a billion dollars, and a new highest-grossing movie of all time, the studio still has the release of ‘Frozen 2’, and the final chapter in the ‘Star Wars’ saga this year, which could possibly smash all records laid before it. Disney is already headed for an inevitable and unprecedented $11 billion haul. The House of Mouse shows no signs of fatigue following a decade of growth as it goes from strength to strength, and it will be very interesting to see how it will finish out ‘the greatest year in cinema’.



Did you enjoy our Special Edition of the Five On Friday?

If you want us to do more articles like this throughout the year, which focus on special events from our Top Pick companies, give us your thoughts by emailing us at hello@mywallst.com


MyWallSt operates a full disclosure policy. MyWallSt staff currently hold long positions in Disney.


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