LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Walt Disney Co will record a $50 million (30 million pounds) writedown at its movie studio division after shutting down production on an animated film, a source with knowledge of the matter said on Thursday.
The untitled stop-motion film was being directed by Henry Selick and due for release in October 2013, the source said. Selick has directed “Coraline,” “James and the Giant Peach” and “The Nightmare Before Christmas.”
Chief Financial Officer Jay Rasulo announced the amount of the writedown in remarks to analysts at Bank of America Merrill Lynch conference. “That will be a very short fourth quarter impact for us,” Rasulo said.
He also said the entertainment and theme park giant did not see the type of advertising rebound it had expected over the summer after the Olympics ended.
At the ABC broadcast network and the affiliates that Disney owns, “we just didn’t see the bounce back after the Olympics that we thought we would,” Rasulo said.
“I think this is a very short-term phenomenon” and based partly on soft ratings over the summer, he said. “For the fiscal first quarter, advertising looks very good for us.”
Reporting By Lisa Richwine; Editing by Gerald E. McCormick, Bernard Orr