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Disney Might Have Lost Almost $900 Million at the Box Office in the Past Year

disney box office 2023
Credit: Disney

2022 wasn’t the best year for the Walt Disney Company for many reasons—120 billion reasons, in fact. When it comes to the movies and productions from the Mouse House, Disney was certainly #1 at the box office, but it also had the year’s biggest flop. It seemed in 2023 that Disney had made some decisions that meant the year was already looking better for the Walt Disney Company, but some recent speculation has many questioning Disney’s reality this year.

This year with releases like Ant-man and the Wasp: Quantumania and Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, it seemed as though Disney had begun reversing its unfortunate 2022 trend at the box office (think Chris Evans’s Buzz Lightyear feature, Lightyear, and Strange World).

The Little Mermaid

A still from The Little Mermaid / Credit: Disney

Disney CEO Bob Iger Steps Into Salvage Streaming Service Losses

After the mess that the Walt Disney Company was left with after former Disney CEO Bob Chapek’s tenure, current Disney CEO Bob Iger returned to the helm to clean up the mess. Disney’s stock was suffering an all-time low, and on Iger’s return, it seemed that things could begin looking up for the Mouse House.

However, after a brief jump, it seems that all may not be well with Disney. The subscriber count on Disney+, Disney’s streaming platform, has dropped massively, especially in India with Disney+ Hotstar. That’s not all; Disney stock has also been circling its lowest numbers, along with low total revenue from the box office, resulting in many questioning the profitability of both Disney’s streaming service, as well as their ability to create engaging, new creative content.

When it comes to their box office losses, one creator provided some insight.

disney box office 2023

Lightyear / Credit: Disney/Pixar

How Much Money Has Disney Lost?

A recent analysis from YouTube creator Valliant Renegade delves into Disney’s losses at the box office. The financial and box office analyst speculated that the Walt Disney Company has lost nearly $900 million at the box office in the past year per his calculations.

In his video, the creator looked at eight of Disney’s most recent releases, including LightyearThor: Love and ThunderStrange WorldBlack Panther: Wakanda ForeverAnt-Man and the Wasp: QuantumaniaGuardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, live-action remake The Little Mermaid, and Elemental.

He calculated the total costs of making the films, adding production budgets for these films as reported by box office tracking websites along with marketing budgets as reported by outlets like Deadline. The number that he came up with in total that Disney spent on these films was $2.75 billion.

He then walked viewers through his calculations for the returns that the Walt Disney Company got on the movies, giving us the number of $1.86 billion. The final number, of course, is the simple calculation of subtracting the returns from the original investment, which gives us a loss of $890 million.

While this might be shocking to some, many commenters were unsurprised.

One said, “Let’s face it. Dynasties do not last forever. Disney was once the gold standard for storytelling and character development. Blame whatever factors you like, but it’s clear they’ve come to the end of an era.”

disney box office 2023

A still from Strange World / Credit: Disney

Another opined, “Disney has gone on for years ignoring feedback, rejecting constructive criticism and attacking people who were STILL paying to watch [their] creations… Any wonder sooner or later they gave up and walked away?”

Of course, we’ve only seen the first half of 2023, and while these numbers can be worrying, the Mouse House certainly has the potential to bounce back with movies like Haunted Mansion and Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny among more set to release this summer.

About Priyanka Kumar

Priyanka is a writer, artist, avid reader, and travel enthusiast based in Chicago. In her free time, she is probably walking by the lake, catching up on the latest releases on TV, or spending inordinate amounts of time rewatching Moana, Encanto, and her Disney Channel life-long favorites Zack and Cody wreak havoc on the Tipton.

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