Disney HQ likely wasn’t the happiest place on Earth on Tuesday, as shares of the entertainment giant closed at $99.72, down 2.4 percent after a double-whammy of bad news.
The decline followed a tough weekend at the box office for Disney as the film studio’s latest Lucasfilm project, “Solo: A Star Wars Story,” underperformed, bringing in just $103 million in box office receipts for the 4-day Memorial Day weekend.
Disney had expected the film to open with $130 million. The disappointing returns of “Solo: A Star Wars Story” has raised concerns for Lucasfilm and its “Star Wars” universe.
Disney’s tough day was compounded by more controversy surrounding Roseanne Barr, the star of its No. 1 show on ABC. The network canceled “Roseanne” on Tuesday after the actress tweeted a comparison of former Obama adviser Valerie Jarrett to “The Planet of the Apes” — a joke that the comedian quickly deleted and apologized for.
In the tweet, Roseanne said of Jarrett “muslim brotherhood & planet of the apes had a baby = vj.” Jarrett, who was born in Iran, is African-American.
Roseanne later apologized for what she said was a joke made in poor taste, but ABC Entertainment President Channing Dungey canceled the show hours later, saying, “Roseanne’s Twitter statement is abhorrent, repugnant and inconsistent with our values, and we have decided to cancel her show.”
Disney CEO Bob Iger also endorsed the network’s decision to pull the plug on its newest cash cow, calling it “the right thing.”
The show, while No. 1 at the network, had its fair share of critics who disagreed with some of the politics and social commentary.
In the last five trading sessions, Disney shares have declined more than 3 percent, and shares are down more than 7 percent so far this year.