Go woke, go broke. The Walt Disney Co. is showing how it’s done.
According to The Wall Street Journal, Disney CEO Bob Chapek prepared his team for some severe economic pain after the entertainment giant admitted that it lost a $1.5 billion loss in the last quarter.
“The austerity measures, which include a ban on all but essential work travel and a freeze on new hires for all but a few critical positions, come days after Disney reported lackluster quarterly earnings and a $1.5 billion quarterly loss at its streaming business, significantly wider than Wall Street analysts had predicted,” the Journal reported.
Disney recorded the massive loss in its streaming service even as its theme parks are reporting record crowds, the Journal noted.
Chapek, in the staff memo, told the company, “I’m fully aware this will be a difficult process for many of you and your teams. We are going to have to make tough and uncomfortable decisions.”
The CEO added that number-crunchers will “look for every avenue of operations and labor to find savings.” That means, Chapek said, “we do anticipate some staff reductions as part of this review.”
It’s unclear at this point how many Disney employees will lose their jobs as the company struggles to regain its financial footing.
Disney’s stock price has dropped about 40% since the start of the year, the Journal noted. On Friday, shares closed at $95.01 each, after having risen 5 percent earlier last week following a drop-off in the wake of the earnings report.
Chapek made headlines earlier this year when he battled Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis over Florida’s new Parental Rights in Education law, which prohibits classroom teachers and school districts from implementing lesson plans based on sexual orientation and gender identity in grades K-3.
Disney maintained the law should not have been passed and vowed to work to have it repealed, either in the Legislature or in the courts.
But that wasn’t all.
Disney banned gender-based greetings, which meant staff could no longer say “boys and girls” or “ladies and gentlemen.”
In the spring videos surfaced of Disney executives bragging about working LGBTQ content into all programming.
The wokeness appeared in other forms.
Its film “Lightyear,” the genesis backstory to the “Toy Story” franchise, featured a same-sex relationship.
Its remake of “Cheaper by the Dozen” swapped out a white family for one that was blended by kids from the parents’ other relationships and multiracial.
The company recently released “Reflect,” an animated short story about a plus-sized ballerina.
Disney released “Turning Red” about a 13-year-old grappling with getting her first period.
A popular character, Doctor Strange, was cut from a spin-off series because, according to the producers, he’s a “white guy.”
Disney is apparently reaping what it sows.