A new report claims that The Walt Disney Company is shutting down animation house Blue Sky Studios.
The report from Deadline claims that Blue Sky Studios, the animation house that produced the Ice Age franchise will be shutting down beginning in April. The closure is expected to impact 450 employees including former Walt Disney Animation Studios President Andrew Millstein who became Co-President of Blue Sky in August 2019.
The spin from a Disney spokesman is that the reason for the closure is due to economic realities. The spokesman stated, “Given the current economic realities, after much consideration and evaluation, we have made the difficult decision to close filmmaking operations at Blue Sky Studios.”
Deadline’s Anthony D’Alessandro added, “The past year has been challenging for Disney on many fronts, of course due to the pandemic, not just on the studio side but with theme park closures and cruise line dockings as well. Sustaining a third feature animation studio was no longer viable for Disney given the current economic realities caused by Covid.”
The move to close Blue Sky Studios in April also puts a halt to their production of the upcoming animated film, Nimona, directed by Patrick Osborne. The film was expected to be released in January 2022. It will now no longer be completed.
The-Numbers reports the Ice Age franchise earned over $3.2 billion at the global box office across five films. It earned $793 million in North America alone.
Aside from Ice Age franchise, Blue Sky Studios recently produced Spies in Disguise starring Will Smith and Tom Holland. The film earned $165 million at the global box office with only $66 million in North America. According to The-Numbers it had a production budget of $100 million.
Other films produced by Blue Sky include Rio, Robots, Dr. Seuss’ Horton Hears A Who, Ferdinand, The Peanuts Movie, Rio 2, and Epic.
While Disney moves to shut down Blue Sky Studios, the organization has embraced woke identity politics on multiple fronts. Most recently they removed a number of their classic films including Peter Pan from Disney+ Kid accounts deeming them inappropriate for children.
On top of removing them from kids accounts, they also essentially labeled their own films racist, putting up a warning when attempting to view the films on their streaming platform.
The warning on the films reads, “This program includes negative depictions and/or mistreatment of people or cultures. These stereotypes are wrong then and are wrong now.”
It continues, “Rather than remove this content, we want to acknowledge its harmful impact, learn from it and spark conversation to create a more inclusive future together. Disney is committed to creating stories with inspirational and aspirational themes that reflect the rich diversity of the human experience around the globe.”
Disney also recently announced they will be overhauling their Jungle Cruise ride in both Disneyland and Disney World.
Carmen Smith, the Creative Development & Inclusion Strategies executive of Walt Disney Imagineering explained the change, “As Imagineers, it is our responsibility to ensure experiences we create and stories we share reflect the voices and perspectives of the world around us. With Jungle Cruise, we’re bringing to life more of what people love – the humor and wit of our incredible skippers, while making needed updates.”
Smith also announced the changes to Splash Mountain just last year. The classic ride will be receive a new The Princess and the Frog theme.
Smith explained the decision to retheme Splash Mountain stating, “We continually evaluate opportunities and elevate experiences for our guests. It’s important that our guests be able to see themselves in the experiences we create.”
“Because we consider ourselves constant learners, we go to great lengths to research and engage cultural advisors and other experts to help guide us along the way,” she continued.
Smith concluded, “I am incredibly proud to see this work continue to move forward with great support from leadership across Disney.”
Back in September 2020, Disney added an “Inclusion Key” to their training for theme park cast members as well.
They announced the new inclusion key stating, “For more than 60 years, the Four Keys of Safety, Courtesy, Show, and Efficiency have provided a foundation for our culture and guided our renowned approach to service as we’ve welcomed Guests from all over the world.”
It concluded, “As we keep moving forward and working together to drive meaningful cultural change, we are introducing Inclusion as a new key and will be rolling out the Five Keys globally across the segment.”
Just before the announcement of this Inclusion Key, CEO Bob Chapek revealed during a quarterly earning’s call in August 2020 that the company had “established diversity and inclusion pillars” and would be heading “toward greater representation and inclusion.”
Disney and their subsidiary Lucasfilm has also publicly supported Star Wars: The High Republic Show host Krystina Arielle after Bounding Into Comics reported on a number of tweets from 2020 where she calls white people racists.
The company also employs E.K. Johnston, who has tweeted disparaging remarks about white women and conservatives.
They also employ Justina Ireland who has bashed white men and white people.
To top it all off, Disney specifically thanked the branch of the Chinese Communist Party that operates in the Uyghur Autonomous Region in their Mulan film. Multiple reports show the Communists treat the native Uyghur population as slaves.
A report from Radio Free Asia even revealed the Communist Party was sending male Han Chinese to not only live in the homes of Uyghur men who are sent to prison camps, but that the men are sleeping in the same beds as the wives of the men who were sent to prison camps.
Former Attorney General Bill Barr also revealed that Disney employees openly display communist symbols. Referring to Disney’s park in Shanghai, Barr stated, “Of the park’s 11,000 full-time employees, 300 are active members of the Communist Party. They reportedly display hammer-and-sickle insignia at their desks and attend Party lectures during business hours.”
One thing is clear, things do not look good for Disney on multiple fronts.