It's Not Just Disney Raking in Cool Cash From 'Frozen'
Armed with catchy tunes, engaging humor and a magnetic fairy tale story based loosely on Hans Christian Andersen's "The Snow Queen," the full-length animated feature has been paying dividends for Disney since hitting theaters last November.
Disney's latest quarter saw it recognizing revenue from "Frozen" in the form of its DVD and Blu-ray release, international theatrical distribution, and merchandise sold through its consumer products division. The movie has recorded nearly $1.3 billion in worldwide ticket sales to become the fifth-highest grossing movie of all time. Anyone visiting Disney's theme parks these days will find plenty of young girls dressed as Anna or Elsa.
However, it's not just Disney that's cashing in. Let's go over a few companies and industries that are seeing their fortunes improve as a result of the film's phenomenon.
It's hard to escape the allure of "Frozen" merchandise, and Disney's licensing deal with Mattel finds the leading toymaker creating a lot of movie-inspired playthings. A big draw are the Glitter Glider Anna, Elsa and Olaf (the snowman) dolls that feature a mechanism that makes them easy to glide around. Anna and Elsa are also available as ice skaters. Mattel also offers a royal closet and the castle itself as accessories for the Barbie-like dolls.
Hasbro's "Frozen" product line isn't as deep and popular at Mattel's, but it is the one behind the Pop-Up Magic Frozen board game. Players can choose to be Anna, Elsa and Olaf as they navigate around the game board, which features a pop-up ice palace.
Earlier this year Disney teamed up with Apple to introduce Disney Movies Anywhere, a platform that leans on iTunes to let anyone purchasing any of Disney's more than 400 digital movies access the streams from the cloud. Yes, that includes "Frozen." This hasn't been enough to spur iPad sales, but it's one more thing that sets Apple's tablet apart from the growing competition. Disney's quarterly report also credited the success of "Frozen Free Fall" -- a mobile game that is available for Apple's iPhone among other devices -- with the strong performance of its interactive software division.
"Frozen's" success has played a part in spiking theme park attendance at Walt Disney World. Lines at meet and greet stations with the characters have sometimes stretched for hours. Several "Frozen"-themed events and attractions debuted last month at Disney's Hollywood Studios. This adds up to prosperity outside of Disney's turnstiles. Visit Orlando -- the area's tourism marketer -- recently reported that occupancy rates for area hotels in June clocked in at a nine-year high of 75.4 percent. "Frozen" isn't the only new thing drawing guests to Central Florida this summer, but it's worth noting that the Harry Potter expansion at rival Universal Orlando didn't open until July. A healthy uptick in tourism naturally benefits everything from area hotels to restaurant chains.
Motley Fool contributor Rick Munarriz owns shares of Walt Disney. The Motley Fool recommends Apple, Hasbro, Mattel, and Walt Disney. The Motley Fool owns shares of Apple, Hasbro, and Walt Disney. Try any Motley Fool newsletter service free for 30 days.