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Disney purchases Marvel Comics (8-31-2009)

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1 Disney purchases Marvel Comics (8-31-2009) on Mon Aug 31, 2009 8:35 pm

The Bill

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Maaaaaaaaaaan.......

I don't know how I feel about this just yet. Shocked

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2 Re: Disney purchases Marvel Comics (8-31-2009) on Tue Sep 01, 2009 11:27 am

The Bill

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I saw this and was cracking up! It's about Hitler finding out about the Disney buying Marvel deal. It's a scene froma movie with the subtitles redone. I've seen this scene parodied with different things, I should really see the original sometime.

Anyway, this one is the best I think, because the "flow" goes so well. lol!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lkt5BB8JbwA

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The Bill

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Alright, it’s been a couple of days, and I have been reading all the various news bits and sources of info about the Disney/Marvel deal. People have been asking me since Monday afternoon what I thought about the deal and I have been telling everyone to give me a day or two so I could let it sink in and I could have a chance to go over some things I was curious about. I didn’t want to be one of the nerds crying out on the internet about something I didn’t have all the facts on. Both Marvel and Disney are HUGE companies, so there was a lot for me to consider with this, both as a fan and as someone running a (admittedly very small) business in the comic book ballpark. I guess the only way to express my thoughts on it, is to go over stuff step by step, so you’ll have to bear with me.

1. Marvel has contracts with several different companies, in different fields, in regards to their characters. For example, Hasbro has the rights to make Marvels toys until 2017. Disney tends to use rival Mattel for toy making, but Mattel currently has the license for making DC Comics toys. The funny thing is, Marvel has their own toy company, Marvel Toys (formerly Toy Biz), so they have the option of making their own toys “in house”. I assume Marvel is/was making more money by licensing out their characters to Hasbro, but that wouldn’t be a big concern to them with the deeper pockets of Disney to back them up.
Who knows? This could mean that the toy world will grow from the “Big Two” of Hasbro and Mattel, to the “Big Three” (Hasbro, Mattel and Marvel Toys).

2. Marvel has just made their own movie production studio within the last couple years, so they could make their own movies instead of having to license their characters out to movie studios. Iron Man was their first movie and it was a big hit. Plans are in the works now for Captain America, Thor, Ant-Man and the Avengers films to all be coming out in the next couple of years.
BUT, this is where things get tricky and misreported.
Fox has the movie rights to the X-Men, Fantastic Four and Daredevil franchises. Sony has the movie rights to Spider-Man. Marvel has no say in movies made of these characters, but they do get a cut of the profits, obviously. This isn’t a great arrangement, as seen when Stan “The Man” Lee had to sue to get his money due from the first Spider-Man film, thanks to Hollywood’s infamous ways of cooking the books so they can claim no films ever make money. Who knows how much money Marvel may be loosing out on with these deals?
Since yesterday (Tuesday), both Fox and Sony have been making announcements about new Fantastic Four, X-Men and Spider-Man movies they are going to fast track (3 Spidey movies, if Sony is to be believed). I think this is all just chest thumping on the parts of the studios. Everyone and their brother knows that it makes perfect sense for Marvel to make their own movies, featuring their own characters. This, again, is where the deep pockets and legions of lawyers of Disney can help.
I think Fox and Sony are blowing hot air with the intention of getting some financial compensation from Disney/Marvel to finish off the contracts and revert everything back to Marvel Studios. I’m sure this would take a while, it wouldn’t be an overnight thing. Still, with Marvel having it’s own movie studio and Disney having the movie distribution arm, it only makes sense to bring everything back in house.
3. Marvel has an agreement with Universal Theme Parks to host Marvel character themed attractions, restaurants, etc., “in perpetuity, east of the Mississippi River”. Universal Studios is a direct competitor of Disney World, so no one thinks this deal will stand. Disney could try to buy out the terms of the contract outright, or they could raise the rates exorbitantly high for Universal to use the Marvel stuff, that they would simply be forced to give it up. Of everything I have seen, this is the one contract that is expected to go bye bye sooner as opposed to later. The general feeling is that the Marvel Island at Universal is now ticking down to its final days.
Still, initial reports are that no “Marvel Universe” could be set up at Disney World until approx. 2012, to accommodate getting rid of the Universal attraction and building the new one at Disney. Of course, for all we know, there can be architects working on the new place as you read this…

4. Marvel has its own animation studio, which traces its roots back to the 80’s when they worked on stuff like “G.I. Joe”, “Transformers”, “Jem” and “The Inhumanoids”. Ironically, Disney already owned Marvels 90’s cartoons of “X-Men” and “Spider-Man”. This is the area where Disney can start making money right away (DVDs anyone?). Also, Marvel will benefit from having the famed Disney animation studios at its disposal. Maybe they will merge? Maybe the Marvel animators will work out of Disney World, where tourists can see them working on new things?
The (fairly) new channel Disney XD is the boys network for Disney. It has already been said that Marvel is going to be the anchor for the station. Anything animated, old or new, from Marvel will be showing on Disney XD (which I, for one, am happy about).
Something else to consider is this: Pixar.
Everyone knows it’s just a matter of time until we see a Pixar/Marvel movie!

5. Disney, while being highly successful with the girls children and tween markets, have had NO luck in capturing the ever elusive boy market. Lets face it, boys don’t like the Disney Princesses, Kim Possible, High School Musical or Hannah Montana. Disney has tried to replicate the success of their girl themed situation comedies (Hannah Montana, Witches of Waverly Place, etc) on Disney XD for the boys, but with little success. Boys simply don’t like that kind of stuff. Never have.
It’s not at all a wonder that the Marvel cartoons on Disney XD have been a ratings hit for them, because that’s what boys like to see! Colorful heroes, evil villains, engaging storylines…sometimes stretching over a full season (X-Men: Evolution, Spectacular Spider-Man)…that’s what boys like to see. Marvel is being looked to be the lead into the boys market that has long eluded Disney.








6. Marvels character library (reports list it as being between 5,000-7,000 strong) is what Disney was after all along. Disney is going to market the ever-living-you-know-what out of these characters…you’d better believe it! Several of Marvels characters are already household names around the world, like Spider-Man, the Hulk, Captain America and Wolverine. Get ready to see even MORE of them. Besides this, I believe Disney will want to mine that rich library of characters for all it’s worth. Disney may have Marvel start utilizing already established, lesser known characters more with the direct intention of creating new stars. Marvel has characters that go across all genres, such as sci-fi, horror, western, romance…you name it.
I am expecting to see something, be it a cartoon series or television show or movie featuring the teams Power Pack or the Runaways, which are groups of super powered children. Marvel has them, they are already established, they can appeal to a wide audience of boys…seems logical to me. Marvel, on its own, couldn’t push a project like this thru, but with Disney’s backing, they sure can!

Another thing to consider is that Disney owns the television network ABC. I would be shocked and surprised to NOT see something Marvel related to air. I’m sure ABC wouldn’t mind to have something to replace “Lost” once it finishes up at the end of next season. Imagine a show like NBCs “Heroes” but set in the Marvel Universe proper. It cold concentrate on some of Marvels lesser known characters, with references made to the “big guns” from the movies, or maybe with the occasional guest appearance from someone like Spider-Man. Shoot, if this gets made, I want my cut of the creators fee! I just made them a darn tv show!

7. Something that doesn’t get mentioned too much is the comic books! I honestly don’t think that Disney will interfere in Marvels comics. What they have been doing has been working and making money…why screw with a winning recipe? Although, I do wonder if Spider-Man would have been allowed to make his now infamous deal with the devil (well, Mephisto anyway), which ended his marriage in the “One More Day” storyline. Maybe Disney would have vetoed such a thing and we all would have been saved from such a stupid premise. Heck, maybe Disney will say they want that story retconned out of existence! Probably not, but I can dream. Hey, I grew up with a married Spider-Man and Mary Jane is a part of Spideys life…it’s just doesn’t seem right her not being around.
Anyway, I digress. I don’t think Disney will do much to get in the way of the comics. They may end up creating a solid division dedicated to creating comics aimed at kids. Marvel has the “Marvel Adventures” line of comics for kids, which I hear is good, but with Disney’s help and distribution, something like that could really explode! Make them available in book stores, 7-11’s, the mall…anywhere kids can have easy access to them.
The average age of comic books fan base is in its 30’s (I was born at the right time, it’s literally grown with me…thanks mom!), and every company has been trying to figure out how to make inroads to the kids again.
THIS IS IT!
Anyone who can’t see that is deaf, blind and dumb. It’s time for mainstream exposure to be given to these characters who make up our modern day fairy tales. Superheroes are the direct descendants of the ancient gods of myth for crying out loud…why would someone want to keep them under wraps and out of the public eye? The Disney/Marvel deal is full of so many possible good things, that I am very excited to see how this all unfolds. I think it’s a shot in the arm to the comic book industry in general, as everyone will have to figure out where they will stand in all this. Disney/Marvel may be able to break up the long standing monopoly of comic book distribution! Without boring you with the details, I can say that that alone is full of epic goodness!

People forget that DC Comics has been owned by Warner Brothers since 1969. That hasn’t seemed to harm them much. This is also ironic, since WB and Disney have been rivals for a long time. Eventually, I suspect you’ll have Disney/Marvel/Coke/McDonalds/PC on one side and WB/DC Comics/Pepsi/Burger King/Mac on the other! Yeesh.

Anyway, I know this was longwinded, but that’s how most of this breaks down. I have heard some disturbing things about Disney contracts, that, if true, will most likely chase away comic creators, but I don’t know how true the terms of the contracts are, so I won’t comment it on it for now.

OK, I’m tired now…

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GoliathAssassin

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I can see three great things coming out of this:

1. DVD's! You hit it right on the nose, Cuz! I want Spider-Man and X-Men ultimate sets the minute they hit the shelves! (Better yet, pre-order with some wierd wallet/hat gimmick...)

2. XD was totally unbeknown to me until reading your article. Yes, Disney has been hurting BIGTIME for a stronger young boys market, and YES Marvel can meet that need. Maybe it will be like old-times, Bill! Maybe kids will get to watch cool cartoons again! And I'm hoping Marvel/Disney gets a few year's practice working together now, so it will all run smoothly by the time I make some! (Ahem... well...) All I'm saying is that I'd want my future sons to have a similar cartoon atmosphere available to them that you had in the 80's and I had in the 90's. This last decade SUCKED for boys, bigtime!

3. You've mentioned the potential plethora of neglected Marvel characters that could be mined and brought main-stream by Disney's deep pockets. This is great news, potentially. (True geekdom hopes all things.) But would those series be played-out like Marvel would have intended, or would many new characters come into the light under a decidedly more Disney focus? My feeling is that Marvel might want to start a bunch of new comic series FAST so that they have the first, most lasting say in the kind of mood their lesser charcters's stories are supposed to have. I think you're right about Disney leaving Marvel Comis alone. (We're all hoping so, at least!) But thre's a chance you might also be right about a new Disney/Marvel division. Therefore Marvel Comics should feature the daylights out of lesser-known characters even in their main titles, just to make sure that when they hit film years later, the format will already be set.

Aside from that, I'm actually veering more toward Hitler's oppinion. Many of his fears, I think, are Universal... pun CLEARLY intended!

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spooks

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Disney really understands all races and ethnicities.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u1O7bOrsVIA

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The Bill

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LOL! Disney indeed understands all cultures...as long as it's white, american and a girl. LOL!

Marvel understands all cultures, as long as it's white or black, american and a boy. It's a match made in heaven!

Now, where are my new Misney cartoons at??

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GoliathAssassin

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Ugh! I just had a HORRIBLY-gag-inducing brainstorm at work today! X-Men Elementary? (Teen Titans has already been done, right?) Five-year-old Cyclops? cyclops Seven-year old Wolverine who still looks five? Twelve-year-old supervillains terrorizing the super-school playground? Evil or Very Mad Principal Xavier before he lost his walking legs? Striped socks like Nanny from the Muppets? NO! DISNEY/MARVEL! WHAT HAVE YOU DONE?! Mad

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The Bill

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GoliathAssassin wrote:Ugh! I just had a HORRIBLY-gag-inducing brainstorm at work today! X-Men Elementary? (Teen Titans has already been done, right?) Five-year-old Cyclops? cyclops Seven-year old Wolverine who still looks five? Twelve-year-old supervillains terrorizing the super-school playground? Evil or Very Mad Principal Xavier before he lost his walking legs? Striped socks like Nanny from the Muppets? NO! DISNEY/MARVEL! WHAT HAVE YOU DONE?! Mad

X-Men: Evolution already did it...except they were in high school.

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GoliathAssassin

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Oh yeah... I think I saw half an episode... Not as bad as my idea. Let's hope it stays that way!

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