Would you like to sing along to Encanto but don’t know the words? Disney+ can help! Speaking of which, we just learned a key reason why Disney+ will add ads.
I’ll discuss these things, Turning Red, and update you on Disney’s political decisions in the latest batch of Disney Headlines.
Nearly three months after its theatrical release, Encanto continues to surprise.
We tracked two different headlines this past week, one of which blows my mind.
Do you know the song, Waiting on a Miracle? It’s this one:
Stephanie Beatriz, the lead voice actress in the film, performed this song under duress. Extreme duress.
Yes, Beatriz just confirmed that she was in labor while singing the final version of this song. Yes, I’m serious.
“I didn’t want to tell anyone at Disney because I didn’t want anyone to freak out, but I was already having some contractions when we were scheduled to record that day.”
Folks, that’s what a pro sounds like. If I get a papercut, I want to shut it down for the day.
This woman birthed a child and recorded a Disney classic at the same time!
Beatriz jokes that her first thought was, “Fingers crossed I finish the song before the baby comes.”
Apparently, her hard-nosed Brooklyn Nine-Nine character, Rosa Diaz, didn’t require much acting on her part. She’s just tough by nature.
Speaking of Encanto, you’ll want to watch it again on Friday, presuming that your kids ever let you turn it off in the first place.
Disney+ will add a sing-along version on Encanto on March 18thwhich is Friday.
So, you still can’t talk about Bruno, but you can sing about him. Here’s the video announcement about the upcoming Encanto Sing-Along:
By the way, Disney+ will release other Sing-Along versions of Disney classics soon.
Speaking of which, Turning Red is now available on Disney+.
You should watch it! Afterward, you should cosplay some of the characters on Animal Crossing: New Horizons or, as I call it, the reason why my wife never puts down her Nintendo Switch.
Why Disney+ Is Adding Ads
The other day, I explained why you will have the option of paying less for Disney+ this year.
The gist is that executives have chosen to create an ad-supported tier for Disney+. Hulu+ has obviously had one for years now.
Disney officials have noticed the average revenue per user for the ad-supported tier. Suffice to say that it’s really good.
As such, Disney has every reason to introduce this option on its linchpin product, Disney+.
However, we also just learned that it’s not the only reason. During the Bob Iger regime, the company purchased several beloved franchises.
The most popular of them are Pixar, Marvel, and Star Wars, although several Fox licenses like The Simpsons are up there as well.
Disney officials have identified a problem with the company’s vertical integration, though.
Ordinarily, businesses love the idea of owning all phases of a product.
With Disney+, the company makes the movies and TV shows and then broadcasts them on ABC, Disney Channel, and Disney+.
Well, ABC and Disney Channel are both diminishing in popularity as conventional television dies as a business model.
So, advertisers have turned to streaming services as a way to sell their products.
Specifically, outside companies would looooove to connect their products to Marvel and Star Wars characters and stories. There’s just one problem.
Disney has vertically integrated so well that it’s nearly impossible for outsiders to do so.
Thus, they have privately lobbied Disney to introduce this ad-supported tier.
Now, someone who wants to market to the prime 18-49 demographic can do so via programs The Mandalorian, Hawkeye, and so forth.
Meanwhile, as a consumer, you’ll have the choice of paying less and watching the ads or paying more to skip commercials.
So, this decision is win/win for everybody!
The Politics of Disney
Okay, now is when I update you on some stories we discussed last week. Yes, I’m talking about the stuff that none of us wants to talk about.
Alas, there was predictable fallout from Bob Chapek’s attempt to work behind the scenes to kill the Don’t Say Gay bill.
As you likely heard, Chapek wound up in a public spat with the governor of Florida, who used Disney to score some cheap political points.
For his part, Chapek used this turn of events to do something he’d contemplated anyway.
Disney’s CEO announced that the company has stopped all political donations in Florida, which is kinda like saying that now that I’ve had my arm chopped off, I’m ready to give blood.
Chapek finally did give his employees what they wanted when he publicly denounced the bill in strong terms. But, alas, it came about five days too late to help him.
To his credit, the CEO did offer this legitimate apology: “You needed me to be a stronger ally in the fight for equal rights and I let you down. I am sorry.”
This statement didn’t do enough to calm irate workers, some of whom are staging walkouts this week.
Meanwhile, I had to laugh at how California’s governor reacted to the situation. He took the opportunity to welcome Disney back to the Golden State.
You may recall that Disney is in the process of moving some of its corporate offices to Lake Nona, Florida. That’s problematic for a company feuding with the local government.
So, California’s governor said this: “Disney, the door is open to bring those jobs back to California – the state that actually represents the values of your workers.”
He’s right, too. California has always fit Disney more than Florida, but the Mouse is pot-committed now.
Feature Image: Disney