Disney CEO Bob Iger has revealed sequels of some of the company’s biggest animated franchises are “in the works”.
Speaking during an earnings call, Mr Iger hinted the return of Toy Story, Frozen and Zootopia, which he referred to as some of the company’s “unrivalled brands and franchises”.
He said: “We will have more to share about these productions soon, but this is a great example of how we are leaning into our unrivalled brands and franchises.”
If Mr Iger’s words aren’t enough, the figures do not lie. In 2014, Disney‘s Frozen became the highest box office film gross for an animation.
Disney to axe 7,000 jobs in bid to cut costs
Loosely based on Hans Christian Andersen fairytale The Snow Queen, the hit film overtook Toy Story 3 for the top spot, according to Guinness World Records.
The franchise continued to break records with the sequel, Frozen 2, which took $350m (£272m) worldwide in its opening weekend, breaking the record for the highest-grossing weekend ever for an animated film globally.
Another instalment of Toy Story may come as a surprise. In 2019, producer Mark Nielsen said after the release of the fourth film it “could be the end”.
Despite the ongoing success of the franchise, which was first released in the UK in 1996, the 2022 film based on the origin story of Buzz Lightyear was banned in 14 Middle Eastern and Asian countries.
Due to the inclusion of a lesbian kiss, the United Arab Emirates, which includes Abu Dhabi and Dubai, announced that the film would not be released as it violated the country’s media content standards.
Unlike the other films, the upcoming sequel to the Oscar-winning 2016 hit Zootopia, which centres on a world run by animals, will be its first after grossing $1bn (£828m) internationally, according to Box Office Mojo.
Mr Iger also hinted at plans for a new Avatar-themed experience at Disneyland, and expressed his excitement at the line up of new films coming to cinemas this year.
This includes Marvel’s Ant-Man and The Wasp: Quantumania; a live action remake of The Little Mermaid; Guardians of the Galaxy: Volume 3; Pixar’s Elemental; and Indiana Jones And The Dial of Destiny.
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The announcements come as roughly 7,000 jobs are being cut, leaving around 4% of the workforce out of work.
Mr Iger announced the job cuts as part of a multibillion-dollar cost-cutting drive that will involve content making and distributing moving to just one Disney division instead of two.