In December 2020, Disney held a special virtual Investor Day event, where it revealed its plans for its global streaming expansion of Disney+, Hulu and ESPN+. The four-hour-long presentation included a first look at its upcoming international general entertainment content brand, Star, and previews of an exceptional slate of all-new content.
The event included presentations from Lucasfilm, Marvel Studios, Pixar, National Geographic and many other studios. Highlighting all the new shows and films that would be coming in the future. The event got everyone super excited about the future of the company. At a time when most of the world was locked away due to the pandemic, with cinemas closed, cruise ships docked, and theme parks closed, Disney’s streaming services became vital to the company, showcasing to Wall Street that they were still a safe investment.
However, the Investor Day event caused major problems for Disney, which still impacts the company today. Namely, so many shows and films were announced at that event, that it set expectations of what fans could see on Disney+ and in cinemas over the next couple of years. Many of those announced projects, nearly three years later, still not only have come out, but many still haven’t gone into production or have been cancelled.
During the Lucasfilm segment of the Investor Day, a huge wave of new projects were announced, including:
Rangers of the New Republic,
Star Wars: Visions,
Star Wars: A Droid Story,
While Marvel announced a wave of new projects for Disney+, including:
She-Hulk: Attorney At Law
Guardians Of The Galaxy: Holiday Special
I Am Groot
Ant-Man And The Wasp: Quantumania
Black Panther: Wakanda Forever
A new book called, “MCU: The Reign of Marvel Studios” by Joanna Robinson, Dave Gonzales, & Gavin Edwards has revealed that Disney forced both Marvel Studios and Lucasfilm to announce projects that were nowhere close to being ready to be revealed as they weren’t far enough into development:
“Kevin Feige and Lucasfilm chair Kathleen Kennedy appeared onscreen to announce a dizzying number of new projects… Both Feige and Kennedy were pressured into announcing projects that were nowhere near ready, some of which have since been canceled… or significantly overhauled and delayed.”
The other studios likely suffered from the same pressure, as Pixar, Disney Animation, FX, 20th Century Studios and National Geographic still have projects announced at the Investor Day which haven’t been either filmed or released, like “Win Or Lose”, “Moana”, “Tiana”, “Sister Act 3”, “Aliens”, “Shogun”, and “A Real Bug’s Life”.
With so many projects being announced in advance, it has since caused both studios huge issues. It’s almost three years later, and some of those projects still haven’t been filmed, causing fans to get frustrated. It has also caused issues with making more announcements at events like Star Wars Celebration, D23 Expo, and San Diego Comic-Con since they still had to get these projects created and released first. This led to some frustration from fans, who were expecting more major announcements about new projects, not minor updates on shows and films that had been announced years before.
Some of those projects have been released as planned, but as we’ve seen, the explosion of content from both Marvel Studios and Lucasfilm to keep Disney+ getting new original content to grow subscribers has caused a strain, not just on the creators, but also on fans, who have become bored with so many releases, that often weren’t up to the brands’ usual standards.
After an explosion in spending for its streaming services, Disney is now drastically cutting back on how many shows it makes for Disney+, especially from the Star Wars and Marvel brands. Some of the projects announced, like “Ironheart”, are reportedly still a year or so away from being released, and both the “Armor Wars” and “Lando” Disney+ shows are apparently being repurposed as theatrical releases.
Disney has spent the last three years, chasing those initial announcements and over those three years, we’ve seen the streaming world change drastically, While Disney felt it was essential that the Investor Day was a huge success, since investors needed to see the company was going to be able to survive the world basically being closed. It’s easy now, years later to forget, just how bad 2020 was for everyone. Though the Investors Day event did build excitement around its business for years to come, but announcing new projects when they were not far beyond just a scribble on a notepad as a potential idea, has damaged Disney on many levels—especially Star Wars fans who have grown weary of announcements that never come to anything.
It’s also interesting that Disney has never had another Investors Day since 2020, because there is no chance it could top the sheer number of reveals we saw at the last one!
Do you think Disney announced too much at the Investor Day in 2020? Let us know on social media!
Roger has been a Disney fan since he was a kid and this interest has grown over the years. He has visited Disney Parks around the globe and has a vast collection of Disney movies and collectibles. He is the owner of What's On Disney Plus & DisKingdom.