Zoradi: Family branding key to Dis success


LONDON -- If moviegoers want sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll they had better go somewhere other than the Walt Disney Co.'s motion picture group. That is, if the movie in question is going to be marked with the Disney brand.

Motion picture group president Mark Zoradi jetted into the British capital Tuesday to extol the studio's new moviemaking ethos, underlined by the desire to create family entertainment.

"If we are careful with our language in our films -- no bad language -- careful about avoiding overt sexual activity and careful about avoiding gratuitous violence, then we feel anyone will be able to come to a Disney movie," Zoradi told business journalists here.

He said he believes that the Walt Disney Co. is one of the few movie studios that carries real branding in audience minds and said that company research has shown that Disney-branded product is more lucrative than content from other sources.

Zoradi said that 80% of the company's ticket sales worldwide were sold for Disney releases, with most of the other 20% coming from Touchstone. "With the Disney brand comes the ability to create branded franchise movies," Zoradi said.

He also stressed that Miramax Films, under the watchful eye of Brit exile Daniel Battsek, will continue to contribute other types of films to the studio's global release slate.
Zoradi also shared the first public glimpse of what he described as an "all-new approach" to trailers, with a rough cut for "Wall. E," a Pixar-made robot adventure dreamed up by the team behind "Toy Story," "Finding Nemo," "Monsters, Inc." and "Cars."

The trailer features helmer Andrew Stanton detailing how the idea for "Wall. E" came about at a lunch that took place as the first "Toy Story" was wrapping in the early 1990s.