Disney, Sony team up for Russian contentby Leah Zanolla
Dec 27, 2006
Hollywood Reporter - MOSCOW -- Russian cinema audiences could soon be watching Disney-branded, locally made animation and adventure movies after Burbank's most famous family entertainment brand moves to Moscow.
The arrival in Russia in January of the Walt Disney Motion Pictures Group -- as part of a new direct distribution partnership between Buena Vista International and Sony Pictures Releasing International, which will handle Columbia TriStar titles -- marks a new milestone in the evolution of the film industry here, where United International Pictures and 20th Century Fox also now have Moscow offices.
Although primarily a move to take advantage of the booming Russian distribution market, Disney also sees it as an opportunity to acquire and co-produce local content to supplement U.S. product, according to Mark Zoradi, president of the Walt Disney Motion Picture Group.
"We are currently open to both acquiring and distributing other locally Russian made movies and are looking to co-produce local content in the coming year," Zoradi said.
"I would like nothing better than to see locally-made Disney-branded films (released in Russia)," Zoradi said, adding that Disney had already "started talking" to Russian creative talent with experience in both animation and live action.
The BVI/SPRI joint venture-- the 15th internationally between the two distribution companies -- reflects the growing maturity of a fast-growing market that has seen domestic boxoffice receipts spiral from about $120 million in 2002 to an estimated $400 million this year, with predictions for a billion-dollar market being achieved around 2010.
"There was no specific trigger (for the decision to go into self-distribution in Russia)," Zoradi said. "We are constantly looking at the growth markets of the world and when it makes sense, we believe that going into self-distribution can generate greater potential. There was a great desire by the wider Walt Disney Co. to enter Russia. Boxoffice is growing significantly and there was the desire to develop the Disney brand in Russia."
The distribution joint venture -- something BVI and SPRI have successfully set up in Mexico, Brazil, Thailand, Singapore and the Philippines -- is designed to make the best use of combined corporate management, sales and back-office skills while allowing separate marketing and promotion teams to best place the two companies' respective titles with exhibitors.
Market positioning began in earnest earlier this month when Zoradi and other joint-venture executives flew to Russia to present the cream of the 2007 release slate to more than 500 Russian exhibitors at a Moscow industry trade fair.
The 26-minute show reel, which highlighted such titles as Disney's "Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End" and "Rattatouille" and Columbia TriStar's "Ghost Rider" and "Spider-Man 3," was designed to whet the appetite of cinema and multiplex manager on the eve of what promises to be another boom year in Russian distribution and exhibition.
The arrival of the new kids on the block is a development that local producers and distributors already are watching with interest.
"The Disney/Columbia TriStar approach in launching its theatrical distribution business is different to that of its rivals (UIP and Fox), who just changed the signboard of their licensed distributors to their own names," said Armen Dishdishian, vp (international) at Moscow production and distribution house Central Partnership.
"The decision to create a joint venture for theatrical distribution in Russia has pros and cons. Economies of scale will save some money in media buying and a combined product lineup will afford greater market power in booking films in theaters. But although marketing and promotion for each companies titles will be handled separately, there remains a risk of conflict of interest in Russia -- especially when the two studios plan to release their anchor projects in the U.S. at the same time. The kind of booking compromise in Russia that will have to be made then remains unclear."
His concerns are echoed by Alexander Semenov, publisher of influential magazine "Russian Cinema Business Today."
"Russians have their own tastes and preferences. Do they love American comic books in Russia? I dare say: 'No!' Until recently, no one had even contemplated the existence of a character named Batman and children had never seen Spider-Man or Superman in printed matter," Semenov said, adding that "Batman Begins" and "Superman Returns" flopped at the Russian boxoffice, taking $1.4 million and $1.9 million respectively, partially because of a lack of advertising.
The Russian distributors of "Spider-Man 2" took note, he said, and "didn't skimp" on an advertising campaign that eventually helped the movie make an impressive $9.35 million at the Russian boxoffice.
See AllDIS UPDATES
- Prices for Epcot International Food & Wine Festival Marketplaces - This year's Festival runs from September 19 - November 10, 2014.
- Seven Dwarfs Mine Train onboard videos and photos available with Memory Maker - After riding the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train, a video and photos of the guest's ride will be added to their My Disney Experience account. These photos/video are only available to guests who have purchased Memory Maker.
- Planet Hollywood's outside merchandise location has closed - This is due to construction. Merchandise is still available inside the restaurant or at Disney's Hollywood Studios.
- Blog - Handbag Round Up: Dooney & Bourke, Vera Bradley, & LeSportsac
- Top 4 Best Thrill Rides At Walt Disney World According to You - The list below is the “final four” of a series of polls tournament bracket style from the DIS Unplugged Facebook page.
- VIDEO: Drinks Around The World Epcot - Corey, Shaun and Craig finish the Drinks Around The World series with the ultimate challenge – drinking around Epcot’s World Showcase!
- Blog - Looking for something to do before your cruise? Visit the Exploration Tower at Port Canaveral
- Chase Lounge will return to the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival - This lounge offers Chase cardholders a place to relax, enjoy complimentary beverages and charging stations for their electronics.
- 2015 Walt Disney World Marathon registration re-opened - Runners can now have the chance to sign up for the 1/2 Marathon, the full Marathon and/or the Goofy Challenge as part of the Goofy Giveback.
- A Simple Guide to Planning Your First Walt Disney World Vacation - Planning a trip to Walt Disney World and don't know where to start? I've simplified the process by suggesting some decisions that need to be made before others.
- Blog - What to Expect at Disney's D23 Destination D Event this November
- New version of My Disney Experience app is available - Users can now check meet and greet wait times and view updated park maps. The method for linking park tickets and passes has also been improved.
- New Disney Vera Bradley pattern to be released September 19 - Disney Dreaming, the newest addition to the Disney Collection by Vera Bradley, will debut at Cherry Tree Lane in Downtown Disney's Marketplace Co-Op on September 19.
- Blog - Apple Pay is coming to the Walt Disney World Resort - What does it mean for the average Disney guest?
- Blog - Disney Opposes "Inflammatory" Amended Complaint in DAS Lawsuit
- Disney Cast Members - What is the one "tip" you can give us? - Don't have time to read a 89-page thread on the DISboards? We've summed up the highlights for you so you can find out cast members' best tips for guests!
- Blog - The Good and Bad of "Captain America: The Winter Soldier" on Blu-ray
- L'Artisan des Glaces in France Pavilion introduces Pumpkin Spice ice cream - Pumpkin spice ice cream and pumpkin spice macaron ice cream sandwiches are now available for the fall season.
- Food & Wine Festival's Late Nights LIVE! now only available on Thursdays - The new event at Epcot's International Food & Wine Festival was originally scheduled to be held every Tuesday and Thursday during the Festival, but will now just take place on Thursdays.
- Last day for Maelstrom will be October 5 - The new Frozen attraction is expected to open in early 2016.
- Ticket discounts available for Cirque du Soleil La Nouba - Discounted tickets must be purchased by 9/22/14.
- Blog - A Walking Tour of Disney's Polynesian Village Resort at Walt Disney World - Construction Update
- VIDEO: Disney Park Bench - Crescent Lake Bridge - Crescent Lake - Take 5 Minutes to Relax at Crescent Lake Bridge - Crescent Lake
- 5 Tips for Taking Better Photos at Walt Disney World - It’s a given fact that when you go on a Disney vacation you are going to take a ton of photos throughout your trip. Use these tips to make those photos the best they can be.
- VIDEO: Disney Park Bench - New Fantasyland - Seven Dwarfs Mine Train - Take 5 Minutes to Relax at New Fantasyland - Seven Dwarfs Mine Train
- 4 Ways to Make Magic for Other Guests at Walt Disney World - While visiting a Disney theme park, the Cast Members on the clock are tasked with doing their best to ‘make magic’ for as many Guests as possible. But, if you’re anything like my family, seeing others enjoy their time at a Disney park is sometimes just as satisfying as enjoying the parks yourselves.
- Crane now in place behind Cinderella Castle - The crane is now in place behind Cinderella Castle to install the Castle Dream Lights for the holiday season. The anticipated date for the crane removal is September 21.
- VIDEO: Disney Park Bench - Splash Mountain Bridge - Splash Mountain - Take 5 Minutes to Relax at Splash Mountain Bridge - Splash Mountain
- Top 5 Hidden Gems at Disney's Animal Kingdom - Disney’s Animal Kingdom is crawling with hidden details and overlooked attractions that most people would just walk right past. But there is so much more if you are willing to take a few moments to stop and really look at your surroundings.
- Ride the Comix! closes at DisneyQuest - This attraction is now closed and will allow for an expansion of the FoodQuest seating area.
- VIDEO: Disney Park Bench - Japan Gallery - Spirited Beasts - Take 5 Minutes to Relax at Japan Gallery - Spirited Beasts
- VIDEO: Disney Park Bench - Club Cool - Fountain of Nations - Take 5 Minutes to Relax at Club Cool - Fountain of Nations
- Disney Legend Tony Baxter added to D23 Destination D lineup - Baxter will present a panel featuring an in-depth tour of an expansion for Disneyland that never materialized.
- VIDEO: Disney Park Bench - Epcot Entrance - Leave A Legacy - Take 5 Minutes to Relax at Epcot Entrance - Leave A Legacy
- Blog - Frustrated At Walt Disney World? "LET IT GO"
- Hoop-Dee-Doo Musical Revue at Walt Disney World's Fort Wilderness Resort celebrates its 40th anniversary - The Hoop-Dee-Doo Musical Revue marks its 40th anniversary after more than 37,000 dinner show performances at Disney's Fort Wilderness campground.
- VIDEO: Disney Park Bench - Capt. Cook's - Capt. Cook's Seating Area - Take 5 Minutes to Relax at Capt. Cook's - Capt. Cook's Seating Area
- Night of Joy completely sold out at Magic Kingdom - This hard-ticket event features contemporary Christian artists in concert for two nights. This year's event is completely sold out.
- Harmony Barber Shop will close for a month for refurb - The Magic Kingdom shop will be closed from 2/2/15 - 3/30/15.
- Frozen Sing-Along added to FastPass+ choices at Hollywood Studios - This is a Tier 2 FastPass+ choice.
- Time change for internal boat service at Downtown Disney - The red route previously closed at 11:30pm. It will now run until 2:00am.
- VIDEO: 2014 Mickey's Not-So-Scary Halloween Party Overview - Mickey's Not-So-Scary Halloween Party is the yearly event that brings the spookiest holiday of them all to Magic Kingdom. This hard-ticket party allows guests to dress up in costumes, trick-or-treat throughout the park, and meet some characters in their costumes.
- Neil Patrick Harris, Isabella Rossellini and Blair Underwood added as Candlelight Processional narrators - There are still a few narrators left to be announced.
- VIDEO: Cruising Around Hawaii - Explore the Hawaiian islands of Maui, Hawai'i, and Kauai while sailing onboard Norwegians Cruise Line's Pride of America.
- VIDEO: Driving Around Oahu - Explore the island of Oahu by driving around to different unique locations. Ted's Bakery, Haleiwa, Matsumoto's Shave Ice, and many others make Oahu a great place to find local treasures.
- Blog - Back to School Disney Style: Great Merchandise Finds in the Parks
- Pricing structure changed for Valet Parking at Downtown Disney - Pricing is based on length of stay - time starts when you reach the valet podium and stops when you return to the podium to pick up your car.
- Blog - Top 5 Must Do's at Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party
- Pangani Research Center closes for refurb - Pangani Research Center- Aviary and Hippo viewing area will be closed 9/2 - 11/14/2014.
- Blog - Villains Soiree - Wickedly Disappointing
- Blog - Dole Whips are back at the Polynesian Village Resort at the new and disappointing Pineapple Lanai
- Shortened monorail operating hours now in place - The monorail will have a different operating schedule than normal as an automation upgrade takes place.
- Blog - The Good and Bad of "Toy Story of TERROR!" on Blu-ray
- American Idol Experience is now closed at Disney's Hollywood Studios - This attraction closed August 30, 2014. No definitive plans have been announced for this space.
- VIDEO: Oogie Boogie's Freaky Funhouse Show at Villains Unleashed - Oogie Boogie's Freaky Funhouse Show at Villains Unleashed brings Vegas to Walt Disney World. Villains Unleashed took over Disney's Hollywood Studios on August 23, 2014 and part of the hard ticket event was Oogie Boogie's Freak Funhouse Show. Oogie Boogie hosts the show that features a sword-swallowing act, daredevil archery and a finale full of fire!
- Refurb closures planned for Walt Disney World water parks - Typhoon Lagoon will be closed 10/26/14-1/3/15 and Blizzard Beach will be closed 1/4/15-3/14/15.
- Top 5 Signature Dining Experiences at the Walt Disney World Resorts - 1,600 listeners and viewers of our DIS Unplugged web-cast voted on their favorite signature restaurants at the Walt Disney World resort hotels.
- Blog - The Top 5 Underutilized Spaces at Walt Disney World
- Starbucks will open at Hollywood Studios in February 2015 - The Trolley Car Cafe will be located along Hollywood Boulevard and be themed like a trolley car station. Disney baked goods and Starbucks La Boulange pastry items will be available. An exact location hasn't been announced.
- VIDEO - Frozen Fireworks Multi-Angle Full Show - “Frozen” Fireworks Spectacular – Everything wraps up at 9:45 p.m. when Anna, Elsa, Kristoff, and Olaf come together at the Sorcerer’s Hat Icon Stage for a grand finale to the day’s festivities, kicking off an awe-inspiring fireworks display set to the glorious music of “Frozen!”
- VIDEO: Star-Lord & Gamora from 'Guardians of the Galaxy' at Villains Unleashed - Peter Quill, aka Star-Lord, and Gamora made their first appearance ever at the Guardians of the Galaxy Awesome Mix Tape Vol. 1 Dance Party during the Villains Unleashed event at Disney's Hollywood Studios.
- Mikala Canoe Club Marina at Polynesian to be closed for refurb - The marina will be closed 9/15 - 9/19/2014. Sail boat/motorized boats and fishing excursions will not be available.
- Entrance 4 to Downtown Disney's parking lot now closed - Entrance 4 (between Cirque du Soleil and DisneyQuest) is now closed permanently. The only entrances are Entrance 2 (across from the Hess Station) and Entrance 5 (across from Typhoon Lagoon).
- VIDEO: Villains Unleashed Opening Ceremony - Villains Unleashed kicked off at Disney's Hollywood Studios with an opening ceremony hosted by Hades, Pain, Panic and Megara from Hercules. Once the stars of the night took the stage they introduced some of the 50 Disney Villains guests could meet at the special hard ticket event.
- VIDEO: Villains Unleashed Event Overview - Over 50 Disney villains took over Disney's Hollywood Studios for the Villains Unleashed Event.
- Times updated for events at Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party - The Party is a specially ticketed event at the Magic Kingdom that begins September 1.
- Villains' Sinister Soiree add-on available for Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party - This special add-on will give guests preferred viewing for Mickey's Boo to You Halloween Parade (8:15pm) and the Happy HalloWishes fireworks show. Lady Tremaine will host a dessert soiree at Cinderella's Royal Table Restaurant for you and some of her friends.
- 5 Elements from the Disney Parks that You'll Find on a Disney Cruise Ship - You have been to the Disney Parks, and you love them. You keep going back for that pixie-dust rush. You can’t imagine a vacation apart from Disney Parks, yet somehow the “old and familiar” is getting a bit old and familiar. This is where the Disney Cruise Line enters. It’s a Disney vacation of a different variety. The dissimilarities are a bit obvious. You’re on a ship in the ocean, visiting foreign places. This is nothing like being landlocked in a park, surrounded by coasters and kiosks. So what can you expect from the Disney Parks to carry over to your cruise?
- Blog - "Villains Unleashed" needs leashing up - Disney's overcrowded hard ticket event leaves guests in long lines most of the night
- Mickey's PhilharMagic refurb extended - The end date has been moved from September 19 to the 28th. The attraction will go down September 8.
- Enchanted Tiki Room going down for refurb in late September - The Magic Kingdom attraction will be closed from 9/27 - 10/3/2014.
- Two Epcot New Year's Eve dining events released - More New Year's Eve events are yet to be released.
- Blog - Beyond Aulani
- Updated operating schedule for monorails - The monorail will have a different operating schedule than normal as an automation upgrade takes place.
- Charging stations for electric vehicles added to Epcot parking lot - Disney has added four Level 2 ChargePoint charging stations to the Journey parking lot at Epcot. Electric vehicles will be charged $.35 per kw/h, with a minimum charge of $1.50.
- Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party tickets sold out on 10/31/14 - Tickets are still available for all other dates.
- New Move it! Shake it! Dance and Play it! Street Party to debut at Magic Kingdom this fall - Stitch and Phineas & Ferb will join the party and Mickey, Minnie, Donald and Goofy will ride on top of giant gift boxes. The soundtrack will feature remixed classic party songs and guests will vote for one of three current hits to be played.
- VIDEO: What's New at Aulani - Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa has many new offerings. Quick service at Ulu Cafe, kids splash zone at Keiki Cove, two new pools, and much more.
- MagicBands can now be purchased without ticket media - The bands are now available for purchase across property.
- Changes to boat schedules at Downtown Disney - Schedules have been changing recently due to construction.
- Blog - The Good and Bad of the "Muppets Most Wanted" Blu-ray
See AllRECENT DISCUSSIONS
More Info ORLANDO HOTELS