Disney’s New Empire

The Walt Disney Company is apparently serious about becoming a theatrical juggernaut, as evidenced not only by recent successful Broadway adaptations of its animated films, but also by extensive plans for a nationwide blitz of big-budget stage shows. “Ten years after Beauty and the Beast arrived on Broadway, to critical brickbats and audience acclaim, the company feared by rival producers for its cavernous pockets and brand-name product has become a dominant long-term player onstage. In recently published figures not disputed by the company, Disney has earned more than $1.2 billion in worldwide gross theatrical receipts from Beauty, $1 billion from Lion King and $270 million from Aida.”

Source: San Francisco Chronicle - 01/25/04