In a year that’s proven challenging for Disney, an original analysis by u/NGGKroze on Reddit sheds light on the entertainment giant’s financial shortfalls. As Disney celebrates its 100th Anniversary, it finds itself approximately $300-400 million short of its budget goals. This shortfall comes in the wake of some notable box office disappointments.
Current Domestic Box Office Scenario
As of November 19, 2023, Disney’s domestic box office earnings stand at $1.33 billion from 14 releases, including films from Fox and Searchlight. With “Wish” set to release next week, expectations are moderate. Given the performance of previous Disney animation releases, “Wish” is projected to earn a modest $50-100 million domestically. This would bring Disney’s year-end total to an estimated $1.52-1.6 billion, not accounting for re-releases or films released in 2022 but continuing their run into 2023.
International Box Office and Global Reach
Internationally, Disney has fared slightly better, with earnings of $1.85 billion. This includes ongoing revenue from “The Marvels”. The global projection by the year’s end is estimated to be between $3.45-3.6 billion. Notably, this is significantly lower than the previous year, which benefited greatly from the success of “Avatar” and strong Marvel Cinematic Universe sequels.
The China Factor
In China, Disney’s major earners include “Ant-Man, Volume 3”, “Elemental”, and “The Marvels”, contributing around $160 million combined. However, these numbers are not sufficient to significantly boost Disney’s global revenue.
Assessing the Financial Picture
Even with the inclusion of “Avatar: The Way of Water’s” $1 billion global gross from 2023, Disney is unlikely to compensate for this year’s shortfall. The famous 50/40/25 “Rule” offers a different perspective, taking into account budget, marketing, and ancillaries for individual movies. However, applying this formula to Disney’s entire catalog is flawed due to the varying marketing and ancillary costs across different movies.
While some summer headlines sensationalized Disney’s financial losses, suggesting a $900 million deficit, these reports may not have been entirely off the mark. Major disappointments like “The Haunted Mansion”, “The Marvels”, and the upcoming “Indiana Jones” film contribute significantly to the year’s losses, with each failing to earn even 1.5 times their budget.
“Wish” remains a wildcard in this scenario, with its performance yet to be determined. However, current projections suggest it might not significantly alter Disney’s financial predicament.