MiceAge Update: Tron-morrowland and Monsters Backlot

Written by MiceAge. Posted in Disneyland Resort, Features, MiceAge Update

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Published on April 09, 2013 at 4:00 am with 101 Comments

Spring break crowds are beginning to wane, and the Anaheim parks will soon begin a few brief weeks of slow off-season through early May. The past few weeks of busy crowds only cemented the new dynamic of the Disneyland Resort, with DCA pulling in more crowds first thing in the morning than Disneyland does as the tourists rush to get their Radiator Springs Racers Fastpass. In this update we’ll fill you in on how this changed dynamic has now altered the future plans for the Disneyland Resort, what the new projects president Michael Colglazier may be able to greenlight during his three year visit to Anaheim, as well as the current thinking on how to handle Disneyland’s 60th Anniversary coming up in 2015. So plop those Wolferman’s English Muffins in the Toastmaster and pop open that jar of premium strawberry rhubarb preserves, you’ll need your strength to make it all the way through this one.

MORE IS MORE

As DCA began opening the first new attractions and amenities in 2010 as part of its 1.2 Billion Dollar extreme makeover, the DCA annual attendance edged up slightly each year by a hundred thousand or so annually. But at 6.3 Million in attendance for 2011, after the opening of The Little Mermaid ride, it was still one of the lowest attended Disney parks in the world, aside from the truly sad Disney Studios Paris park. The goal for 2012 with the huge re-launch of the entire park was to add an additional 1 Million in yearly attendance, on top of the far more modest annual gains since 2009. But the phenomenal success of Cars Land last June, and the way most of the rest park was transformed aesthetically for 2012, blew that original estimate out of the water. The reality is that DCA added several million to its attendance for calendar year 2012, even though the new park was only open for half the year.

When the annual unofficially-official (but extremely accurate) attendance numbers are released late this spring by the T.E.A. amusement park industry trade group, the calendar 2012 attendance for DCA will peg somewhere north of 9 Million for the year. And with the very busy spring break numbers that have just come in, DCA continues to build on that stunning turnaround from 2012. Barring some unforeseen drop in attendance for Anaheim, the 2013 numbers for DCA will head above the 11 Million mark and likely surpass Epcot as the third most visited theme park in North America this year.

To be sure, a portion of that daily attendance gain for DCA is being taken from Disneyland next door, especially since Disney only counts the first theme park a person enters each day as the lone “attendance click” of the turnstiles. But this past spring break the combined parks in Anaheim were pulling in between 9,000 and 16,000 additional visitors per day compared to their year-ago numbers. And the majority of those visitors have been big-spending tourists staying in local hotels rather than the more frugal day-tripping locals and Annual Passholders. The Anaheim Resort District’s hotel occupancy rates have been sent skyward since last June, making every business owner in Anaheim’s resort area quite happy with the new DCA.

AS ONE DOOR CLOSES…

This extraordinary and long-term change in attendance and interest in DCA is now forcing Team Disney Anaheim and Burbank to rethink their plans for Anaheim’s second gate. There had always been a “Phase Two” plan for DCA’s makeover, but then Imagineering is infamous for having second phase projects which never get completed. The second phase for any theme park project usually consists of additional ideas that didn’t get funded in the first phase, or any small pet projects that key Imagineers may have cooked up during the Blue Sky phase. But Team Disney Anaheim’s sharp pencil boys had assumed that after Cars Land opened they would turn their attention back to Disneyland and green light one of the two major expansion plans that we’ve told you about in the past; either the expansion of Frontierland north of Big Thunder Mountain, or the expansion of Tomorrowland on its eastern flanks.

Monsters Vs. Muppets?

But instead of working on Disneyland next, TDA is now seriously considering an additional E Ticket thrill ride and new themed placemaking for DCA in the next few years. Taking a concept originally cooked up a few years ago for Disney Hollywood Studios in Florida, there’s now a very serious proposal to tear out the MuppetVision and Stage 17 buildings in the back of DCA’s HollywoodLand area and build a Monsters Inc. mini-land there. An all new roller coaster thrill ride would be installed in that corner, themed to the cavernous Door Hangar scene in the Monsters Inc. movie. The popular Monsters Inc. dark ride nearby would remain, although the façade of that building would get a dramatic upgrade as that entire area would be transformed into a fully realized Monstropolis environment. The open space in front of these two Monster Inc. rides, the family dark ride and the thrill ride Door Coaster, would remain to be used as the location for DCA’s popular evening dance parties. The cheap “studio backlot” theme of this area would be removed entirely, and the backside of the Hollywood Blvd. facades would be built out and repurposed as new dining and merchandise locations. The old Hollywood and Dine food court in the eastern corner would be totally reworked as an indoor “flex space” to replace the loss of the Stage 17 building currently used for special events.

Will it be door number one or door number two?

The thinking behind this sudden change in plans is not so much to keep up the stunning momentum at DCA, but mainly to prevent overcrowding in the years ahead. Although it would be possible for DCA and the entire Resort to coast on the Cars Land success for the next half decade before the next major attraction project got underway (which is exactly the type of business model they use for WDW), TDA now realizes that what DCA will quickly need is additional ride capacity. The attendance gains are so large that the mythical Phase Two that WDI always has tucked away is now actually needed from a hard-nosed business standpoint. WDI had shopped the Monsters Inc. “Door Coaster” to Team Disney Orlando over five years ago, but got a cool reception from that executive team who is notoriously unenthusiastic about building new rides. But turning the rather homely and bland corner of DCA’s HollywoodLand area into a Monstropolis mini-land is now the goal of many TDA and WDI executives.

MEANWHILE, IN DISNEYLAND…

Not that Disneyland has been entirely forgotten. While the big-budget required to build Monstropolis in DCA will require additional funding to be pulled from Disneyland’s expansion money, there is still a realization that Disneyland needs additional ride capacity as well. The expansion of Frontierland is pushed to the back burner for now, while attention turns to Tomorrowland. Borrowing a new ride system and theme to be used in Shanghai’s Tomorrowland, the second project in the pipeline for Anaheim is a Tron themed speeder bike ride using much of the old PeopleMover route. This is an idea that has been thrown around in the past, but in recent months it’s gained serious steam and is quickly nearing a green light from Burbank.

The goal here would be to add thrill ride capacity to Disneyland, while at the same time providing WDI an excuse to go in and give an aesthetic reskin to Tomorrowland and create a more modern and sleeker version of the circa 1967-77 buildings there. Tomorrowland is much like DCA of the last decade; a place that had some of the most popular and highest rated rides in Anaheim, but that wasn’t particularly attractive and nowhere that anyone really wanted to hang out for very long. Disneyland guests currently go in to cherry pick a handful of popular rides in Tomorrowland, but the land consistently ranks low on satisfaction surveys as a place that is memorable or inviting. With the addition of the Tron speeder bike coaster, Tomorrowland would be given a cohesive themed aesthetic and a far more compelling story. Particularly for the Tomorrowland project however, there’s a desire to not start serious construction until after the park’s 60th Anniversary celebration in 2015. The Door Coaster and Monstropolis project at DCA might be able to get underway before the 60th, for an opening in 2016 at the same time that the speeder bikes and Tomorrowland redo get underway.

As usual, the timing on expensive new E Tickets can be tricky to pin down until the day after the bulldozers arrive, but the suits in TDA are moving as quickly as possible on both of these projects and right now it looks like Monstropolis might begin first. In the meantime, Anaheim has its 60th Anniversary to plan for in 2015, and that will be an anniversary marked by new parades and night spectaculars rather than new rides. The first parade to be replaced for the 60th will be the Pixar Play Parade at DCA, with plans for a majorly reworked World of Color and a new night parade for Disneyland. Throw in the inevitable anniversary fireworks and plenty of kitschy merchandise, and you’ve got the basics behind Disneyland’s 60th Anniversary to begin in early 2015, as it’s currently planned.

WALK IT OFF

In the short term, the new Disneyland Resort president Michael Colglazier still needs to formally introduce himself to the salaried troops in Anaheim. That event, dryly labeled the “Salaried Business Update”, will finally happen two weeks from now during a two-hour presentation in the Hyperion Theater. Thus far Michael has been saying and doing all the right things to get off on the right foot with the Disneyland Resort CM’s. He’s even spent several days in uniform working side by side with the CM’s; most memorably in a teal green busboy uniform helping with breakfast crowds at Flo’s V8 Café, before changing into an Attractions uniform to help with the afternoon lines at the three Cars Land rides.  As we’ve mentioned before, there’s quite a curiosity about Michael in Anaheim, since he was a rather unknown executive in charge of the least visited theme park at WDW infamous for broken down rides and declining showmanship standards. It will be interesting to hear what he has to say to the salaried troops, now that he’s been out in the parks charming the hourly CM’s.

Unfortunately, one thing Michael hasn’t yet grasped or made any attempt to fix is the glaring disconnect between the average TDA employee and the Cast Members out in the parks. For example, at the Salaried Business Update the parking department will once again staff their entire fleet of backstage trams used to shuttle hundreds of TDA managers to and from the Hyperion Theater for the meeting, to prevent anyone from TDA having to walk the 0.6 miles from their office building to the DCA theater. What strikes fear into the heart of many in TDA is having to actually walk through the theme parks, lest they have to interact with a paying customer. The easy 0.6 mile walk on level ground from TDA to the Hyperion Theater on a delightful spring day surely can’t be the deterrent there, since most hourly CM’s now park in the Pumbaa satellite parking lot and walk much further than that every day.

Team Disney Anaheim, TDA

That daily Pumbaa commute for hourly CM’s presents them with a one-way walk of 0.8 to 1.3 miles from their car to their various work locations, for a total of up to 2.5 miles of walking to and from their cars for every shift they work. There is the Katella CM parking lot a bit farther out that offers shuttle service to Harbor Blvd., before a park walk of up to one mile from Harbor to a work location in Cars Land, Paradise Pier, or Frontierland. But the experience of battling the overcrowded Katella lot and then waiting to pack into a broken down shuttle bus is so unpleasant that thousands of CM’s per day choose to park in Pumbaa instead and walk over two miles to and from their cars each day. And it’s much faster than waiting for shuttles and battling traffic.

But to prevent anyone in TDA from having to walk through the theme parks, even just once per year on a slow spring weekday, they will run continuous backstage shuttles for Michael’s Salaried Business Update in a few weeks. Even the time savings of being driven from TDA to DCA can’t be the real reason, since lines up to 20 minutes long quickly develop for the shuttles before and after the meeting, while the direct walk itself would take only 15 minutes. The shuttle service is simply a case of TDA cubicle drones being entirely out of touch with what their core product actually is, operating theme parks and hotels for paying customers.

Michael won’t be announcing the Monsters Inc. door coaster or the speeder bike project at his update, and instead will stick with glossy PowerPoint shows rattling off all the impressive statistics of the last 12 months with Anaheim’s soaring visitor attendance and spending numbers that are literally supporting the entire Parks & Resorts division in North America right now. But there is a very good chance that one or both of those upcoming Anaheim projects will be announced this August at the D23 Expo across the street in the Convention Center.

WHAT A DIFFERENCE A DAY MAKES.

But one thing Michael will likely be able to discuss at his update on April 24th is the plan we’d told you about last month to host another 24 Hour Party at Disneyland on May 24th and 25th. Unlike the last 24 Hour Party to celebrate Leap Year Day last February, this event will be held in both Disneyland and DCA to help mitigate crowds. The city of Anaheim and Caltrans are waiting patiently for Disney’s final plan to alleviate the gridlocked city streets and backed up freeway that took over the Anaheim area after all the TDA executives and senior managers went home last time. The overnight party will also take place out at WDW, but only at the Magic Kingdom Park there. It all promises to be a logistical nightmare for Anaheim, especially since that is also a Grad Nite party at DCA until 3:00 A.M. We’ll stay close to this developing story to help you decide if you want to brave the crowds for this overnight event again.

Oh-kay – that should do it for today. What do you make of those two big E Ticket projects? Which would you like to see first?

I’d really like to thank the MiceAge Crew for stepping in to help keep these updates coming. I assure you that you are in great hands with the team and I couldn’t be prouder of what we’ve accomplished these past 10 years and what Dusty and team have planned for you in the next 10. Your support is what keeps us going and we are sincerely thankful. – AL

See you at Disneyland!

About MiceAge

The MiceAge crew was started by Al Lutz in 2003, and is committed to bringing you the inside Disney story that you just can't get anywhere else. As much as we'd all like to see more frequent rumor updates on the site, we only publish when reliable news and rumors are available to share. Generally, you'll find a new MiceAge news update from Al and crew once or twice a month on Tuesdays. The MiceAge news Editor can be reached at: [email protected]

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  • Trumpet

    Great Update Al

    If all things go to plan, then it would be great to see this hapen. The Monstropoli area will look fantastic, but the dance parties should be held in a seperate area, so it fits in.

    Tomorrowland needs some love and care, so the proposed attraction loks good to me, and it is music to my ers that they could use the old peoplemover course.

    Thanks Again Al

    Trumpet

  • Park Hopper

    Didn’t they have a problem with the Tomorrowland buildings shaking apart when the Rocket Rods used to speed through them? I know the track would have to be replaced but wouldn’t the problem with the structures remain?

    I don’t know if Monstropolis is going to be much competition for Harry Potter opening just up the road. What will the TDA suits think if DCA attendance falls flat after the next big expansion due to competition from Hogsmeade?

    • disneyland255

      Al did mention portions of the people mover track would be used. I would think that if this was an issue with the buildings that they would tear out the track inside the buildings and only use the outside track.

      • MrsMonroe

        but shouldnt tron be indoors to reflect the movie’s theme?

    • CaliforniaAdventurer

      Sounds good, but like you said, hardly a “Potter Swatter”, right?

    • danielz6

      The introduction of transformers had 0 effect on Disney’s attendance and is a better attraction than forbidden journey in many peoples opinions!

      • danielz6

        I don’t think universal will be serious competition for Disneyland until it can significantly expand its theme park space…maybe purchasing the adjacent golf course.

    • DLFan1995

      “Didn’t they have a problem with the Tomorrowland buildings shaking apart when the Rocket Rods used to speed through them? I know the track would have to be replaced but wouldn’t the problem with the structures remain?”

      No, there was no issue with the structural integrity of the buildings with Rocket Rods. But, that’s probably not an issue overall as they won’t be using any of the old track for the new ride anyway.

  • LoveStallion

    Really great update, Al. A fascinating read. I envy you having such great sources!

    I’m not huge on this new Pixar land trend, to be frank. Cars land sort of worked because it is at least evocative of the great deserts of the West (not really California-esque desert scenery, but whatever). Monstropolis makes no sense at all, and just like so many of these franchise attractions, can just arbitrarily be put anywhere. In this case, DCA. But there is nothing inherently Californian about it. They should just re-theme the land as Emoryville. ;)

    However, I do agree that the northeast corner of Hollywoodland is a sorry, sorry place, and has been since opening day in 2001. It’d be good to have it get some attention that doesn’t just involve evening dance parties. And Hollywoodland is bereft of any real rides, save Tower of Terror, which very much feels like the add-on it is.

    I do dispute defining the Monsters, Inc. ride as “popular,” though. It is obviously doing better than Superstar Limo (honestly, the most mind-bogglingly horrible ride Disney has ever produced), but I wouldn’t really call it a crazily popular ride. It feels like an afterthought and its attendance supports that.

    As for Tomorrowland, I’m curious as to what they fully envision for a light cycle coaster on the Peoplemover tracks, especially considering the lessons learned from the Rocket Rods.

    Regardless, I hope Tomorrowland gets more than some new paint and fascia. If it means waiting a few extra years, it’s worth it. The place needs to be hit with a cleaver, not pruning shears.

    Again, wonderful update. Really informative. Thanks.

  • Eric Davis

    Thank you Al for the wonderful update! It is crazy to think that i have been reading MiceAge for 10 years.

  • xboxtravis7992

    Interesting rumors.

    I like the idea of a Tron ride. And if parts of the Peoplemover are put into use for it, I think many, many Disney fans would be happy. I wonder if a rollercoaster attraction is subject to the same OSHA rules the Peoplemover is?

    However I am most happy that they are considering a facade renovation in Tomorrowland, that is what the land really needs to be great. As mentioned, Tomorrowland is like DCA 1.0; lots of great rides (Star Tours and Space Mountain) but horrible facades.

    Monster’s Inc land sounds a bit weird IMO, I wonder if their is enough space to make it feel different from Hollywoodland? Something about the Red Car doesn’t seem to fit with monsters. However Monsters Inc would be more exciting than the current dance parties, Muppet Visions, and closed of sound stages.

  • MrGoat

    Wow, exciting stuff! Thanks Al!

  • TifaOnACloud

    I echo LoveStallion. While that area of the park needs a lot of TLC, Monstropolis isn’t the answer. Already two lands are devoted to Pixar properties which have little to do with the California theme, but at least still sort of fit. Monstropolis doesn’t at all, and this coming from someone who loves Monsters Inc. The land should be 30s Hollywood, through and through, but unfortunately it’s always easier just tying into tried and true properties which happen to be getting sequels at the moment.

    I’m liking the Light Cycle idea, though I trust it means reworking the track properly this time, given the issues of Rocket Rods? Not only would it return the much needed kinetic energy to the land in possible race form, but it’s a nice little tribute to one of my favorite parts of the Peoplemover – the Tron room.

    • LoveStallion

      Thank you for your echoing. ;)

      Of course, the bigger question that I have been asking since sometime in 1999 is why would you want to build a theme park about California … in California? Is this not the same Disney that initially omitted Pirates from the Magic Kingdom because they thought piracy was too much of a reality in Florida, and, therefore, lacked the fantastical?

      But we know that most of the conception of DCA was misguided and now the Parks dept is just tidying up what it’s been given.

      And now I feel like I’m trolling this thread. Apologies all around.

  • rstar

    I would prefer they look at updating Tomorrowland in DL before doing anything else at DCA. But it’s all rather exciting, just the same! Thanks, Al for another wonderful update, and all of your work as far back as the DIGs!

  • http://micechat.com Dusty Sage

    I like both concepts, Tron and Monsters. But it’s been so long since anything new has come to Disneyland that I hope they revise their plans and do the Tron project first. I love the idea of them keeping the current PeopleMover route, though, I suspect that those tracks will need to be rebuilt.

    Disneyland is turning 60, it would be a real shame if they missed another major anniversary. I’d think there is more that they could do! Come on Disneyland, do something spectacular for the 60th!

    • Dizzey

      Same here. Ride vehicles zipping overhead and through other attractions still says “Tomorrowland,” it would be a good nostalgia tick for us old guys, and would bring back some of the lost ambiance/cool factor of TL.

      Kinda funky to have a “door room” in the current Monsters Inc., and then a coaster “door room” right there as well, though. I guess little kids wouldn’t ride both rides and therefore need some explanation.

  • mcow1

    Great update, Al. Seems to me the 24 hour party update timing is pretty weird. May 24th and 25th is Memorial Day weekend. Why would they want to do something like that on what is already a very crowded weekend?

    • lovechows

      I had the same reaction–that weekend is already very busy at the parks and they are planning Opa! as well. It really makes me wonder if TDA looks at their calendars when they make these decisions-lol!

  • jcruise86

    You Tron fans are certainly an enthusiastic group. Small, but enthusiastic.
    The first Tron movies has some special effects that looked cool in 1982,
    but it was a bad movie. I’m not being a troll, it
    really
    was
    mediocre at best.
    And I’m a Jeff Bridges fan.

    The sequel, “Tron Legacy” earned a Metacritic score of 49. I rarely see films that earn scores this low. It was not a blockbuster.

    Now that Disney spent many billions for Star Wars and Marvel, it’s time for Rasulo, Iger, Staggs and Crofton to all step aside, and for (with his Universal contract expiring) Steve Burke to come back home to Disney. R.I.S.C. is too risk-averse to handle these (yuck) brands. Burke built the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, now he should try to top that at Disney. And a Star Wars adventure should be totally new. Let the movies chase an amazing attraction.

    • LoveStallion

      Yeah, Tron is kind of a yawn, even if it is visually cool.

      But Disney doesn’t have much sci-fi in its stable, so it leans on this. What else will it do, The Black Hole?!

      • http://micechat.com Dusty Sage

        There is another . . . in a galaxy far far away.

      • lovechows

        Yes, Dusty, I second that!!! With Episode 7 finally being developed, it would seem the most relevant (and my favorite).

      • Marko50

        Well, actually, aren’t they going to reboot The Black Hole?

        And I liked Tron. And although the movie may not have been a hit, the video game sure was! Too bad those joysticks were so hard to keep in working order.

    • Uncle Bob

      I’m not a big Tron fan, but I still like the idea. The one strong thing it has going for it is its futuristic aesthetic. Additionally, the light-cycles are very well known, probably the only thing many people remember about the film. Any thrill ride is going to popular, so I don’t really think this needs to be a draw just based on the popularity of the franchise; If it’s going to be a good ride it can stand on its own. And this seems to be the one aspect of Tron that everyone wants to experience themselves. It’s actually nice to see them choosing a film that fits the land rather than the most popular one they could try and find a way to squeeze in.

      • whydoyoucare

        Thank you sir, well said.

    • whydoyoucare

      Not a troll huh,

      Then why even bother posting statistics? Is this simply for you to emphasize that it wasn’t as great so you can get a kick out of this? I’m sorry but your statement seems contradictory to what you say regardless of being a Jeff Bridges fan, this was uncalled for & unnecessary.

    • Nocturne

      I’m a big fan of TRON Legacy. I know it was panned, mainly because of story and acting (yes those are important). The main factors Disney cares about are aesthetic and experience. TRON delivers that in spades. Everyone can admit that the TRON aesthetic will really improve Tomorrowland and will never suffer the stale feeling that past incarnations have presented. I am confident that TRON is the aesthetic solution that Disney has been working so hard to achieve with Tomorrowland.

  • WDWorldly

    1) Maybe they’ll upgrade the Monsters, Inc. dark ride to Tokyo’s “ride and go seek” version.
    2) Hopefully they aren’t forgetting the added theming needed at Paradise Pier, and improving/placemaking the rest of Hollywoodland, especially the Hyperion

    • LoveStallion

      It’s a nice idea to upgrade Monsters, Inc., but I see a few hurdles, mainly:

      1) Disney stateside is cheap. The Oriental Land Company throws money at stuff and doesn’t care. DisneySea cost $4 BILLION to build the same year DCA cost a little over $1B.

      2) Available space. Imagineers are on the record that even the current adaptation of Monsters, Inc. in the old Superstar Limo space was difficult. Do a side-by-side comparison on Google Maps at the same elevation of the Tokyo and Anaheim rides. Tokyo’s surface area is substantially larger than what is available in Anaheim, and unfortunately, the Anaheim building is located in a location that doesn’t really lend itself to expansion.

  • StevenW

    I wonder if the tram story is an exaggeration. People are not sheep. They won’t all follow directions to use the tram especially if they can walk and many will.

    The stories on DCA and Tomorrowland is good. For the Tron speeder bike coaster, they have to solve the problem of the unstable People Mover tracks. I am not convince the People Mover tracks can be used “as is”. They have to reinforce the tracks or have the new tracks superimposed on the tracks and self-supporting.

    The Monster coast sounds like another Mad Mouse type coaster that fits into a small space. Another kiddie ride. Not exactly a crowd absorbing ride.

    • lightofdarkness

      It is not an exaggeration. They wait in line longer than it would take them to walk. Al reported on this last year.

  • Illusion0fLife

    I agree with the general consensus that Monstropolis is not right for that section of the park. Monstropolis is a fantastic environment and has always absolutely begged to be recreated in a theme park, but tacking it on as a subland of Hollywood Land seems thematically lazy.

    What I’d rather see them do is combine the show building of Mike & Sully to the Rescue with Stage 17, add a more elaborate indoor queue themed to Monstropolis, and put the Door Coaster in there, perhaps recycling some sets and animatronics from the original attraction. I’m also of the mind that Muppet*Vision is worth preserving because it was the final Muppets film Jim Henson directed before his death and it’s also just a really great show that still holds up to this day. By all means, plus the effects, add a more interesting facade (my vote goes for a version of El Capitan in reference to the new film), but keep the show.

    As for the TRON Lightcycle ride, I’m in wait and see mode. TRON attraction proposals have been on again off again since Legacy came out so I’m not going to care too much either way until something official is announced. That being said, Tomorrowland is really due for a retheme, and TRON might be a nice inclusion.

    • LoveStallion

      Perfectly stated – “thematically lazy.”

  • lightofdarkness

    The thing I took away from this is that both projects have a slim chance of happening. Neither project may start until 2016? When Colglazier is on his way out and Iger stepping down in 2015… no way. If neither of these projects break ground in the next year and half they aren’t happening.

    • jcruise86

      I doubt Iger will step down in 2015 because’s making 30 million a year running Disney. He looks 49 and he’s married to Willow Bay. I’ll put on my Bernie Brillstein hat and speculate that he set up Thomas Staggs to fail, wasting a billion on MyMagic+ Famcuff bracelets that will debut and be criticized in 2014. Staggs, a former CFO with no storytelling experience will be seen as not the best person to be in charge of Disney. Then guess whose arm will be twisted into staying head of Disney for three to five more years? Mr. brand, Bob Iger. (Fun fact: you know who else is into branding above all else, Sasha Grey. Not the best company.)

      • whydoyoucare

        WTF? this branding comment came out Waaay off out of nowhere.