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Disney Studios 'Missed' Q2 Fiscal 'Big Hero'

5 May, 2015 By: Erik Gruenwedel

Sometime heroes have it tough.

Walt Disney Studios May 5 reported a 10% decrease in second-quarter (ended March 28) operating income to $427 million from $474 million during the previous-year period. Revenue dipped 6% to $1.7 billion from revenue of $1.8 billion a year ago.

The studio, which includes Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment, attributed the decline to revenue drops in home entertainment and theatrical distribution, as well as higher revenue sharing with the consumer products division from Frozen merchandise.

Indeed, Disney said the Feb. 24 release of animated action-comedy Big Hero 6 came up (understandably) short at retail and previously theatrical when compared with Frozen — the outsized No. 1 title in 2014.

Frozen generated more than $335 million in packaged-media revenue from combined Blu-ray/DVD disc sales exceeding 18.1 million units a year ago. It also generated $400 million in revenue at the 2013 domestic box office; $873.4 million internationally.

That said, Big Hero 6 ranks as the top-selling Blu-ray Disc release in 2015 (through April 12) with $46.6 million in revenue from more than 2.4 million units sold. The title has sold another 1.9 million DVDs for $30 million — No. 1 industrywide, according to The-Numbers.com.

Big Hero 6 sold $222.5 million in tickets at the 2014 domestic box office, $429.6 million internationally, for a worldwide total of $652 million.

“We continue to be very pleased with the performance of the studio slate. It was one of the best quarters in the studio's history,” CFO Jay Rasulo said on the call.

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