How does Disney do it? Every movie they send off to theaters has people waiting in lines, staying up late for premieres, and holds a wide audience of ages. What sorcery do they have? Is it marketing and promotions? Is it brand loyalty?
The answer: It’s, honestly, a little bit of both and more.
As an experienced entertainment fanatic (I worked at AMC Theatres for 2 years, trust me I know what I’m talking about for opening weekends), people go bananas for a solid Disney film, especially the newly advanced live-action renditions of their favorite classics. According to Seventeen magazine, Disney’s ingenious live-action remake ideas began in 2010 with the classic Alice in Wonderland. It also doesn’t hurt that Disney continues to recruit A-List celebrities like feminist Emma Watson as Belle in Beauty and the Beast, Angelina Jolie as Maleficent, and Johnny Depp as the Mad Hatter in Alice in Wonderland. All of these actors are pros in the “dos” and “dont’s” of movie premieres, interviews, and publicity in general so promotions are a slice of cake for them. The amount of press Disney does for these films as well is astonishing, even for Disney. According to Deadline online, the film had around 18 promotional events for publicity, along with the countless FREE publicity from social media outreach. Oh yeah, and did I mention that Ariana Grande with her 44.5 million Twitter followers (not to mention Instagram and Snapchat!) sang the original Beauty and the Beast song with John Legend? Think of that outreach! Not for too long, that’s too many people to count!
Image from Rap-Up
Either way, with that much publicity and a brand loyalty so strong that fans wait outside millions of theaters and events to see the movie and its cast, Disney is doing something right.
With Beauty and the Beast dominating box offices around the world ($350M global premiere for Beauty and the Beast, according to Rotten Tomatoes) it clearly stakes the claim as the top movie to see this week, as it knocks reigning Logan and King Kong to follow it.
Again, the question arises…how does Disney do it, as this obviously isn’t their first rodeo in the matter. As touched on, publicity plays a HUGE role in the audience reached (what is the fans didn’t know the date it came out or who was in it??) But what else? Brand loyalty.
People have been attached to the “happiest place on earth” (and brand if you follow that logic) since 1937 with their debut of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs in the classic animation. Fun fact: it was actually one of the first films to be in color! With a following amassing since then, no wonder the films continue to be a box office smash. Similar to comic book live-action renditions, Disney is taking notes, and it seems like they can go nowhere but up now with more live-action movies in the works for the near future. Disney fans, go take a peek at IMDB and see what Disney princess or animal movies is making a debut on the big screen next!