Who will own Disney’s soul?

Great news for Silicon Valley. The revoultion of the traditional media industry continues as Apple CEO Steve Jobs’ will be installed as the company’s largest single shareholder in the $7 billion takeover by Disney.

Steve Jobs has successfully revoutionized how the music and TV industry embraces and adopts the internet medium into their business model REMOTELY through his other vehicle Apple’s iTunes and proliferant iPods. Now, with a seat on the decision-making roundtable of Disney, one of tech’s most celebrated personalities will have a crack at media domination from within “Old Media” industry itself.

With Pixar, Disney hopes to secure one of its most lucrative revenue drivers for the long term and stay at the forefront of the movie industry. With theatre attendances plunging for the whole of 2005, it is gratifying to see that at least one major movie studio is taking on the problems, related to changing consumer/ movie-watcher habits, head-on. Pixar’s creative production team, with their proven tack record of success, will definitely invigorate the flagging fortunes of Disney in its multiple ventures. However, pardon me for my lack of knowledge, movie-making to me, is still a rather risky business and highly dependent on transient consumer tastes. Pixar is a relatively young movie studio and there is no guarantee that they will continue their track record of success over the long term. What Pixar is different is that tey take a rather technological approach to movie-making, relying on computer animation and voices rather than real, actual human characters in all of their hits. This wil definitely play into the digital media tsunami. I like to emphasise again that this to me, looks like Disney wants to consolidate its position within the internet media, especially in their relationship with Steve Job’s Apple. With closer integration at the management level, we should see all of Disney’s media archives being digitalized and available for sale on iTunes very soon. Such close collaboration with a traditional media titan wis definitely good for Apple, and for once, Steve Job’s latest foray at digital entertainment surely looks like a win, at this point of time against the Evil Empire of Microsoft.

Taking a step back, it all depends on how much influence Steve Jobs wants to play within Disney. But he has already gotten through the door, and the world should once again wait for the Wizard of Cupertino to again weave his magic wand and hopefully sprinkle stardust over Disneyland again.


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