By the way, I didn't make this image. I think the linework alone makes that obvious.
Nothing on the news when I went to work. Get to work, need a second to clear my head, and I call up the news.
"Disney buys Marvel for $4 bil."
As I do my best Keanu Reeves impersonation and go, "Whoa."
So NOW what?
Here's the nuts and bolts that everyone is comfortable with discussing: the deal is to be finished by the end of the year. Marvel stockholders get $30 per share in cash, plus 0.745 shares of Disney stock for each Marvel share they own (given prices just before the market opened, that comes to roughly $50 per share). Marvel, at least at the start, will have complete autonomy, Disney is not going to stick their noses in yet. The movie deal with Paramount is up in the air, as Disney wants to distribute the movies themselves, but there are contracts to honor first, and there are five pics left on the deal, each of which is slated to hit theaters within three years, so it might be easier to just wait for the deal to burn out.
Now, how about the more interesting angles? Unsurprisingly, no one's talking.
I'm interested in what is going to happen to Diamond. Comics really have nothing to do with this, it's about movies and merchandising. Marvel is exclusive with Diamond for distributing its comics. Disney has no such deal in place. Their comics used to be published by Gemstone, owned by Steve Geppi, who owns Diamond, and there are lots of rumors swirling about Disney not being happy with Gemstone and Geppi. If they can pull Marvel out of Diamond for any reason (and not only can Disney find its own distro deal, but Disney has enough money to handle any legal challenge. Geppi might not have enough to mount a credible "settle with me" suit). Given the cutbacks Diamond has been making and the financial thin ice the company has been on up to now, losing Marvel could send them down the soil pipe.
What about Boom! Comics, which has been getting a lot of Disney licenses like Finding Nemo and the recent Incredibles mini written by Boom! editor Mark Waid? And for that matter, what about Slave Labor, who gets to publish Tron comics, Haunted Mansion, and Gargoyles? And will Disney still publish their titles like LIttle Gloomy?
For that matter, what about Universal Studios? Their theme park is pretty much Disney's only real competition in Florida. Universal licensed the Marvel superheroes for some of their attractions. Now, the characters are owned by Disney. Something tells me Harry Potter World can't open soon enough.
How exactly did this deal happen without a single rumor blowing in the breeze? This doesn't happen overnight. The feds could learn a thing or two about secrecy from these guys.
Will we see a Jonas Brothers/Steeltown Rockers crossover? How about Hannah Montana and Dazzler?
And why do I get the feeling that the wall between the Haves and Have Nots of the comic book world just got another layer of bricks?