By Sahil Patel
Why did Disney buy Maker Studios? It’s the 500-million-dollar question (or, potentially, a 950-million-dollar question).
According to Disney chairman and CEO Bob Iger (who had an on-screen cameo at the beginning of Maker’s first Newfront last night), Disney sees Maker as a marketing and distribution vehicle.
When it comes time to promote the company’s upcoming films, Disney can work with Maker’s production team and talent to produce original short-form content that would appeal to those films’ target demos. “We think there’s a huge marketing opportunity with this company,” said Iger.
Maker also has the ability to produce and distribute short-form online content at a level of expertise that Disney does not currently have, Iger said. That will come in handy as Disney tries to reach an online audience with its expansive library of IP, from the “Star Wars” franchise to Marvel and Pixar.
That element was hinted at by Maker at its Newfront, showcasing a montage of various creator interpretations featuring “Star Wars” characters.
“We believe in the growth of entertainment on new media platforms,” Iger said, adding that Maker will help “create exciting new opportunities to derive value from our content and create new content as well.”