This was a light news week for Disney movie news, but the rest of the world has really made up for it. Before we get to the Disney news, I wanted to offer a resource to parents struggling to speak with their kids about race. There is a lot of craziness going on not too far from where I live and even when we agree that racism is bad, it doesn’t necessarily mean we always know how to talk to our kids about it. I wanted to include this article in case anyone is having trouble talking with their kids about race.
The Hollywood Reporter confirmed that Lucasfilm is in talks with Stephen Daldry to direct a standalone Obi Wan Kenobi film. It’s something fans have asked for, but I’m not sure if we need it. As Ed points out on the podcast this week, “need” and “want” are two entirely different things. Depending on your level of Star Wars love, fans can have a very different view of which standalone films will actually enhance the Star Wars universe. There are some people who don’t feel like we “need” episode 7, 8, and 9. Those people are wrong, but they do exist.
However, I fit snugly in the camp that isn’t terribly excited about an Obi Wan standalone flick. Obi Wan has been in four Star Wars movies. That count rises to seven if you include his force ghost appearances in the original trilogy and his vocal cameo in The Force Awakens. Add in the hundreds of episodes of The Clone Wars on Disney XD and you have a character that has been thoroughly explored in cinema and television.
This isn’t the world of Star Wars advancing. This is a look back. A nostalgia play. With Rogue One and The Force Awakens, Lucasfilm showed that they can expand the universe, introduce us to new characters that we love, and not rest only on nostalgia to get fans to the theater. For me, an Obi Wan standalone film is a move in the wrong direction.
It’s taken a few years, but it looks like the Disney company is finally starting to actually prepare for Bob Iger to leave the company. Disney just extended the contracts for three key C-suite executives and significantly boosted the pay of another one they hope sticks around.
Disney extended the contracts for Chief Financial Officer Christine McCarthy and Chief Strategy Officer Kevin Mayer through 2021. Both will also get pay increases, from $1.3 million to $1.5 million. In addition, Disney extended the contract for General Counsel Alan Braverman through July 2019, but left his pay at $1.6 million. Finally, Chief Human Resources Officer Jayne Parker received a pay raise from $865,000 to $975,000.
With Iger slated to leave the company in 2019 - for real this time - each of these executives will be key to helping the new CEO learn the ropes. It is also possible that this move signals that Disney will be looking for an outside successor to the Disney throne, but I hope that doesn’t happen.
Replacing Bob Iger will not be an easy task, but he can’t stay CEO forever. It looks like Disney is finally preparing for the inevitable transition.
It’s easy to see why so many people are excited about MoviePass. The service promises to offer virtually unlimited movies at your local theater for only $10/month. Even for casual cinephiles it is a great deal.
The service isn’t perfect. There are no blackout dates, but you also can’t use it on 3-D or IMAX features. Plus, you have to buy your ticket within 100 yards of the location where you want to use it, which is far from convenient. Oh, and you can only buy one ticket at a time.
But MoviePass is missing the point. People aren’t skipping movies because they are too expensive. They are skipping the theaters because the movie experience sucks. Here’s what they can do to fix it.
It turns out Nick Fury isn’t just missing Black Panther. It was recently confirmed that the character will sit out both Avengers: Infinity War and the untitled sequel. In an interview with Yahoo, the actor said:
I’m not in Avengers 3 and 4. They’re shooting them now, and they haven’t called me yet. They wouldn’t let me go to Black Panther-ville, so it’s kinda like how you gonna make a black Marvel movie and not let Nick Fury show up in it?!
As the Marvel Universe expands, it will be more common for actors and actresses to feel left out of certain get togethers. Contract negotiations, outside projects, and story considerations will keep characters out of films. Thor (Chris Hemsworth) famously got a roommate after he was left out of Captain America: Civil War. If we get more shorts like that, a few actors missing a movie will be well worth it.
If you haven’t seen the Japanese version of the Thor: Ragnarok trailer, your life isn’t as good as it could be. The trailer is amazing and so much better than anything we have seen. Plus, Dr. Strange makes a cameo in the trailer. Take a look below.
If you long for the days of vintage Disney Channel, long no more my friend. Just take a listen as the Disney Channel stars of the 90’s sing Circle of Life.