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Iger Has Some Explaining To Do After Disney Drops $1 Billion on Four Flops

Disney drop $1 billion on four flops
Bob Iger and his 2023 movie flops. Credit: Disney

It will be interesting to see how Walt Disney Company CEO Bob Iger talks his way out of this one. Perhaps will he will bring out Dwayne Johnson and announce another live-action remake like he’s done before. Or maybe he’ll blame everything on his predecessor, CEO Bob Chapek.

But on the eve of Disney’s shareholder meeting, there is something clear: Disney is losing money, and Iger doesn’t seem to have any answers.

LaKeith Stanfield Haunted Mansion

Credit: Disney

Related: Iger’s Getting the Band Back Together to Save Disney

Disney is struggling with what to do with its television division, especially ABC and ESPN. Iger brought back his former heirs-apparent, Kevin Mayer and Tom Staggs, to formulate a plan to move forward with ESPN’s jump to digital-only. Walt Disney World has been plagued all summer with rumors of drops in attendance, and Iger’s only response was to argue that “pricing wasn’t the issues.”

But Disney’s most significant problem comes from its entertainment division, which is currently hemorrhaging money. Iger admitted in an interview with CNBC that the “challenges were greater than I anticipated,” but now Wall Street shareholders will see just how significant those challenges are.

Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny

Credit: Disney/Lucasfilm

Related: Disney’s Profit Engine Is Driving the Car Off A Cliff

Disney’s latest release, Haunted Mansion (2023)is breaking box office records, not in a good way. After two weeks, the film has only grossed $42 million on a budget of $150 million. It is slated to be the second-worst Disney movie based on a ride in history, ahead of only The Country Bears (2002). It will make less money than the original Haunted Mansion (2003). 

But Bob Iger will have to explain how Disney spent $1 billion on four flops in six months of this year. It started in February with the release of Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania. According to Forbes, the film cost nearly $200 million, which did not include post-production costs and marketing, and only made $476 million. Disney followed that up with the live-action Little Mermaid (2023), which cost the studio $265 million and only made $564 million.

The third film in the trilogy of Failures was Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny (2023), which cost the studio nearly $300 million and only made $358 million. Finally, Disney and Marvel sunk $211 million into Marvel’s Secret Invasion for Disney Plus. There’s no telling how many people specifically signed up for the streaming service because of this one show, but it couldn’t have been that many.

little mermaid box office

Credit: Disney

Walt Disney Studios sunk nearly $1 billion into four productions critics widely panned. And that doesn’t include what’s happening now with Haunted Mansion. 

Bob Iger better have a rabbit to pull out of his hat to explain why the audience hasn’t come to theaters for Disney films. But after losing $1 billion last year on box office flops like Strange World (2022) and Lightyear (2022), Iger better have something.

If the success of Barbie (2023) and the Super Mario Bros Movie (2023) has taught Disney anything, it should be that audiences aren’t interested in remakes. Disney must give the audience something new to regain its box office mojo.

We will continue to update this story at Disney Fanatic.

About Rick

Rick is an avid Disney fan. He first went to Disney World in 1986 with his parents and has been hooked ever since. Rick is married to another Disney fan and is in the process of turning his two children into fans as well. When he is not creating new Disney adventures, he loves to watch the New York Yankees and hang out with his dog, Buster. In the fall, you will catch him cheering for his beloved NY Giants.

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