As expected, today’s firing of Disney Studio head Rich Ross has Tinsel Town buzzing, and a picture of a Mouse House in disarray is emerging. Marvel Studio head Kevin Feige has been named several times as a potential replacement, but Nikki Finke’s must-read analysis also confirms what we wrote about last year: legendary skinflint Ike Perlmutter is very much in the mix at Disney, and his personal dislike of Ross certainly didn’t help matters. (Ross was also on the outs with Pixar’s John Lasseter, according to Finke.) But even Disney chairman Bob Iger is feeling the Ike pinch:
Rich Ross, the head of Disney Studios since October 2009, has just been removed from his post. We can’t hope to know what it means—although lots of theories will be floated very soon—but flops like MARS NEEDS MOMS and JOHN CARTER are probably part of it. “Mars killed Rich Ross.” Even the impending mega-colossal worldwide superhit AVENGERS didn’t help Ross.
Marvel’s Junior Art Director Rich Ginter — the man responsible for many of their ad campaigns and advertising materials, such as this stylish Defenders campaign, is moving to Disney in California, Twitter tell us. There he’ll be a Digital Designer, where he’ll be “working on their comic/magazine apps & designing stuff for that and new apps.”
Although the Marvel invasion of Disney theme parks with such delights as Speedball’s Spinning Teacups has been retarded by the fact that Universal still has the theme park rights to most of the Marvel rides, Disney is finally getting in the act with an Avengers skin for one of the Disneyworld monorails. Disney had previously skinned the futuristic transport method with a Tron skin.
We’d ride that.
Well, it’s official, JOHN CARTER is being labeled a disaster, a flop, an “Ishtar” and anything else that signifies profit-and-loss ratio infamy. The media decided a while ago that this movie was going to be a disaster for Disney, and after finishing #2 for the weekend with barely $30 million—despite making over $100 million worldwide—every ill omen has been seen as sagacious. And the hate is baffling.
The man who wrote the words “Oh, you, pretty chitty bang bang, chitty chitty bang bang, I love you,” is dead.
Well, he wrote half of the words. Robert B. Sherman, (above, far right) one of the Sherman Brothers songwriting team (along with Richard, who is still alive) has died at age 86.
He also co-wrote “Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious,” and “Bare Necessities,” and “Chim Chim Cheree,” and…”It’s a Small World After All.”
From the moment Disney purchased Marvel, people were drawing a line between their Disney XD channel — an attempt to lure more of the lucrative audience of young boys — and the Marvel characters. Marvel animation has been running non-stop on the cable channel ever since, but in April, the Marvel Universe programming block will roll out with the new Ultimate Spider-Man cartoon as the tentpole. Produced by Man of Action — Joe Casey, Joe Kelly, Duncan Rouleau and Steven Seagle—the creators behind Ben 10 and Generator Rex, with input from Jeph Loeb,joe Quesada and Brian Michael Bendis, the show does not lack for comic book bonafides.
Plus, it’s got JK Simmons reprising his lifetime role as J. Jonah Jameson. Soundboard that.
Over at CBR, Kiel Phigley had a chat with John Rood, DC’s Executive VP-Sales, Marketing and Business Development, about DC’s digital sales and it’s worth taking a closer look at.
The biggest question, which is still utterly unanswered, is how many copies these digital comics are selling. The second biggest question is where these sales are coming from and Rood does get into that, just a little: