There’s no doubt that Disney has a huge share of the visual entertainment industry. For some, it’s a bad thing – they feel Disney monopolize and simply churn out generic stories. Consequently, we’re here to have a close look at what they have produced, and to try and deduce if it’s a good or bad thing that they are the owners and custodians of the two biggest franchises in entertainment . . .
Quite simply, the growth of the MCU has been phenomenal. In less than fifteen years, it’s become the most profitable film franchise ever. Whether you love or loathe it, that’s quite some achievement. Our most recent MCU feature, Spiderman: No Way home MCU Multiverse Implications discusses how the writing in the franchise considers the future of the MCU. The writing has been key to growing the MCU, and reaching a wider audience than just comic-book readers. Yet, homage has been paid to the cultural history of Marvel, too. Onscreen adaptations have been faithful to long term fans, whilst attracting new ones. That’s no easy accomplishment.
Another raging success story, at least commercially. What George Lucas began as a simple escapist fantasy story has become a world-wide franchise. The most recent trilogy — all Disney work — divided opinion. Many older fans were left unimpressed. However, they felt somewhat repaid by The Mandalorian. Disney trusted in the vision of Jon Favreau (the MCU’s Happy Hogan), which proved to be a super-smart move. Again, the success is down to brilliant creative work. The Book of Boba Fett, hopes to further build on that success. Disney have also done a great job in making The Bad Batch, and they have many cool future Star Wars projects all planned out, too.
Disney’s streaming service was the first to really rival Netflix. Amazon never really threatened the dominance of Netflix. Whether you think it’s a good or bad service depends largely on if you like what they’re producing. However, after the launch of the streaming service a good deal of further content was made available. For example, the Die Hard movies. The price did go up a little, but generally you get value for money. This was due to the purchase of Fox, which also included right to the X-Men characters, too. A smart move!
Curse or Blessing?
Ultimately, this is down to opinion. What should be noted though, is the facts. Disney have made superhero movies what they are, and never were before (with the odd, notable exception). Now, people are seeing live action versions of characters they likely never would have before, because they were lesser known. Also, if Disney hasn’t taken over then we would have likely continued to see mostly sub-standard super hero movies. Someone would have told these stories anyway. And, the big bucks productions have well and truly made the careers of several actors. That can be easily forgotten. Something else to consider is that the wealth of Disney has meant that the MCU could weather the storm that is Covid-19. So, whilst it draws its critics, it seems Disney is more of a blessing than it is a curse.