Save Disney
December 11, 2003 2:59 PM   Subscribe

Save Disney - in a followup to a previous and informative and link-filled MeFi post, a friend sent me a link to savedisney.com today which has three interesting documents: Roy Disney's resignation letter, Stanley Gold's resignation letter, and a letter from Roy Disney to all cast members. There's also links to email and show support, as well as links to all sorts of related informational sites. Is this ingenius guerilla PR from upset employees, or is there something deeper here?
posted by twiggy (21 comments total)

 
Roy Disney's family reputation is on the line here! Disney was for years the preeminent entertainment conglomerate around the world - but thanks to a very staid and old management, led by Michael Eisner who has been at the helm for about ten years too long, the ship is now adrift without a rudder.

We're talking about a company that has effectively abandoned its roots: telling entertaining and engaging stories through unique characters.

Oh, the ironies abound: Disney today is like Apple Computer was in the mid-1990s until Steve Jobs returned and re-molded the company in its traditional image. Today, it appears as though Steve's *other* company, Pixar, is poised to become the Disney of the 21st Century. And if you don't think that Jobs has his eye set on that goal....think again.
posted by tgrundke at 3:11 PM on December 11, 2003


Pixar!
posted by The God Complex at 3:25 PM on December 11, 2003


I thought Big Corporations were Evil. Have I landed in Bizarro Metafilter?
posted by mr_crash_davis at 3:43 PM on December 11, 2003


they are. disney has been the slimiest for 2 decades. the number one producer of sexploitation and cheesy R rated crap (a fact semi-hidden via owned subsidiaries) disney has been hiding behind it's "family" reputation all this time. you've come a long way from walt, baby, and it aint exactly breaking news if you've been paying attention.
posted by quonsar at 3:50 PM on December 11, 2003


I blame the lousy, straight-to-video sequels to everything--Peter Pan 2?!? Jungle Book 2?!? and what's with making movies out of rides? If it wasn't for Pixar, they'd only have Miramax and Touchstone making anything decent (but not for kids), and buying ABC was a giant mistake, too. I've also heard that Disney and Gold leaving the board just solidified Eisner's hold on everything--his main opponents left, and now the people left are all on Eisner's side.
posted by amberglow at 4:07 PM on December 11, 2003


I read somewhere that Michael Eisner also doesn't wipe the toilet seat if he sprinkles on it accidentally.

He must GO.
posted by robbie01 at 4:13 PM on December 11, 2003


Screw Disney.
posted by scarabic at 4:32 PM on December 11, 2003


[Tonight the part of Stanley Gold will be played by Stephen Root.]
posted by highindustrial at 4:46 PM on December 11, 2003


We're talking about a company that has effectively abandoned its roots: telling entertaining and engaging stories through unique characters.

Most of Disney's characters were not invented by Disney and, therefore, very far from unique.
posted by eyeballkid at 4:56 PM on December 11, 2003


Disney has alway been about crap. They just dropped the phony family entertainment pretense.
posted by 2sheets at 6:16 PM on December 11, 2003


Basically it's 1984 all over again. At that time the animation unit was completely adrift, the parks were languishing, and the company overall had lost its way. The CEO at the time, Walt Disney's son-in-law, had to go. Roy Disney and Stanley Gold quit the board in order to gain the freedom they needed to force out the sitting CEO and bring in Eisner. The end result was the complete revitalization of the company. Eisner did absolutely amazing things for the next decade. Now here we are back where we started. The sitting CEO needs to go, and Roy Disney and Stanley Gold are doing everything they can to make that happen. The board was already in Eisner's pocket - it is going to take the majority stockholders to effect the change. By no longer being on the Board, Disney and Gold can speak openly and bluntly to stockholders, and Eisner's power base may just find itself evaporating.

Or not.
posted by Lokheed at 6:44 PM on December 11, 2003


I thought Big Corporations were Evil. Have I landed in Bizarro Metafilter?

I did always imagine Bizzarro-Worl as being blue...
posted by kaibutsu at 7:13 PM on December 11, 2003


The next Disney theme park ride: Bizarro Metafilter.
posted by sillygit at 8:16 PM on December 11, 2003


I have no love for Disney. Till they give something back to the public domain they won't get any gold stars from me.
posted by rudyfink at 8:21 PM on December 11, 2003


Nah, fuck disney. Hope they die
posted by delmoi at 8:24 PM on December 11, 2003


For the record, I'm no fan of disney myself... I was just curious what people's take on all of this was now that there is a lot more information out there about it all...

reactions have been interesting... :-)
posted by twiggy at 8:28 PM on December 11, 2003


I'd say fuck Disney, but I think I kind of like Roy Disney, particularly when he talks about:
"The perception by all of our stockholders -- consumers, investors, employees, distributors, and suppliers -- that the Compay is rapacious, soul-less, and always looking for the "quick buck" rather than long-term value which is leading to a loss of public trust."

Bingo. How right you are, Roy.

Fuck Disney?! No. Fuck Eisner!
posted by insomnia_lj at 5:31 AM on December 12, 2003


insomnia_lj: I see Bush's philosophy of with us or against us has taken hold with you. Have you considered 'fuck them all'?
posted by biffa at 5:53 AM on December 12, 2003


I've considered that, Biffa. I know you were talking to Insomnia but allow me to field that effing them all philosophy. We don't have to. It's ruining itself quite well.

Bottom line is the firm will sink or swim on the merits of its own power-mad creations. Eisner's doing what he thinks is best. Roy Disney's doing what he thinks is best. They disagree. Their internal squabbles will inadvertently do more harm than good to the morale of the employment and the public image of the firm.

If the company weathers this storm, it won't have survived for a lack of trying to kill it from within. Power corrupts.
posted by ZachsMind at 7:07 AM on December 12, 2003


Geez, you'd think with all the money Roy Disney must have, he could afford a decent-looking website. Makes me wonder about its legitimacy, honestly.
posted by GhostintheMachine at 8:25 AM on December 12, 2003


Most of Disney's characters were not invented by Disney and, therefore, very far from unique.

I couldn't disagree more. The Disney stories or based on public domain, but the characters are pure Disney.

I cite Mouse Under Glass by David Koenig (a regular contributor to mouseplanet, by the way) for this statement. The amount of refining of the everything (characters especially, but the story as well) is amazing; why do you think other animation studios weren't able to pull off feature films as successfully as Disney has in the past?

Roy and Stanley's resignations is sad, and somewhat scary. Here's to hoping that they made the right decision and that the rest of the Board of Directorers will realize that Eisner needs to go.
posted by scottq at 10:16 AM on December 12, 2003


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