If you include James Cameron’s Titanic and Avatar, which the company are now in control of the distribution rights to after their takeover of Fox, then Disney holds a stake in 29 of the 50 highest-grossing movies ever made spanning Star Wars, the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Pirates of the Caribbean, Pixar, Walt Disney Animation and the roster of live-action remakes.
No other outfit in Hollywood can even come close to matching the Mouse House’s stranglehold on pop culture, one that’s only set to tighten after a massive number of Disney Plus exclusives hailing from all of their biggest brands were announced at the recent Investor Day. The platform gathered more than 86 million subscribers in roughly a year, so when the executives say original streaming content is going to be their number one priority moving forward, you can guarantee that Netflix and Amazon will be looking over their shoulders.
However, the theatrical model is hopefully far from dead, and insider Daniel Richtman claims that the studio are looking to position Tron as their next Star Wars, which is a bizarre idea if it turns out to be the case. After all, the latter is one of the most commercially successful and universally beloved franchises in history, while in 38 years we’ve gotten two Tron movies, neither of which could be called major hits.
Jared Leto is gearing up for third outing as we speak, which is going to be a very expensive and therefore risky project for the studio, but if Disney are in fact planning on trying to establish one of their many dormant properties as a potential contemporary of a galaxy far, far away, then surely Alita: Battle Angel would be a much more suitable candidate.