Tag Archives: The Walt Disney Company

The Walt Disney Company Presents Wall-To-Wall Coverage of The 2019 NFL Draft

The Walt Disney Company’s presentation of the 2019 NFL Draft will offer more to fans than ever before as the entire event, April 25-27, will air on both ESPN and ABC, and each network will provide distinct telecasts for Rounds 1-3 in prime time. Additionally, all seven rounds of the draft will be streamed live on the ABC App, ESPN App, broadcast on ESPN Radio and available in Spanish – on both TV and radio – on ESPN Deportes. The NFL Network will also televise the 2019 NFL Draft.

ESPN and ABC NFL Draft productions by the numbers:
 An estimated 125,000 – 150,000 feet of fiber optic cable
 1,000+ production elements
 600+ player highlight packages
 360+ hours of dedicated NFL Draft content across all ESPN networks (since the NFL Combine)
 250+ hours of top prospects’ and recent NFL Draft picks’ best college games on ESPNU
 100+ player personality bumps
 100+ NFL team graphics
 70+ microphones
 57 cameras
 50+ NFL team edits
 30 player live shots
 26-hour NFL Draft Marathon on ESPN and ESPN2, leading into Round 1
 25 “sense of place” bumps with local Nashville artists
 7 production trucks

ABC’s differentiated coverage for Rounds 1-3, which will focus on the journey of NFL Draft prospects, features “Good Morning America”’s Robin Roberts (Round 1) and the eight-time Sports Emmy® Award-winning “College GameDay Built by The Home Depot” crew of host Rece Davis, analysts Kirk Herbstreit, Lee Corso, Desmond Howard and David Pollack, and reporters Tom Rinaldi and Maria Taylor, and contributor Chris “The Bear” Fallica. Plus, the “2019 NFL Draft on ABC” will include ESPN’s Jesse Palmer and special guest NFL MVP Patrick Mahomes (prior to Round 1). “American Idol” judge Luke Bryan and mentor Bobby Bones will appear on ABC’s prime-time draft coverage. Bryan will join the GameDay crew on night one, while Bones will serve as a roving reporter from the streets of Nashville on both nights, sharing the enthusiasm of the city, fans’ passion and a behind-the-scenes look of the NFL Draft for viewers at home. ABC will simulcast ESPN’s Day 3 telecast of Rounds 4-7.

ESPN’s traditional draft telecast, presented for the fourth year by Courtyard, features host Trey Wingo, NFL Draft analysts Mel Kiper Jr. and Todd McShay (Rounds 2-7), NFL analysts Louis Riddick and Booger McFarland (Round 1), NFL Insiders Chris Mortensen and Adam Schefter and NFL host Suzy Kolber.

ESPN Radio will cover every round of the NFL Draft for the first time. Host Dari Nowkhah will be joined by reporter Ian Fitzsimmons, former NFL star and current ESPN Radio New York host Chris Canty, and former Miami Dolphins and New York Jets front office executive Mike Tannenbaum. Coverage begins April 25 at 7 p.m. EDT.

ESPN Deportes will also cover every round of the NFL Draft for the first time. Commentators include Eduardo Varela, Pablo Viruega, Miguel Pasquel, Sebastian Martinez-Christensen, “Monday Night Football”’s Alvaro Martin and Raul Allegre, and special guests (TV), and Kenneth Garay and Carlos Nava (radio).

All seven rounds of the 2019 NFL Draft will also be streamed live on both the ABC App and the ESPN App.


“Golic and Wingo”
“Golic and Wingo” on ESPN Radio from 6:00-10:00 a.m. EDT – with simulcasts on ESPN2 and ESPNEWS – will be live from the West Club at Nissan Stadium on April 25 and 26. Mike Golic and Mike Golic Jr. will be joined both days by host Jason Fitz and a full slate of guests. The broadcasts are open to the public with doors opening at 4:30 a.m. CDT.

“Good Morning America”
“Good Morning America” co-anchor Robin Roberts will be live from Nashville on April 25 to preview the NFL Draft.

“Get Up!”
Host Mike Greenberg and the team from “Get Up!” will be live from Rock Bottom Restaurant and Brewery, located next to the stage where the Draft picks will be announced, on April 25-26 from 8:00-10:00 a.m. EDT on ESPN. This will be the first time the popular morning show hosts an entire show from a remote location.

“First Take”
ESPN’s popular morning debate show “First Take” will be live from the West Club at Nissan Stadium on April 25 and 26 from 10:00 a.m. to noon EDT. Stephen A. Smith and Max Kellerman will be joined by host Will Cain. Both shows – which will feature a full lineup of NFL and other celebrity guests such as Eddie George, Tim McGraw and ESPN’s Desmond Howard and David Pollack, as well as free giveaways – will be open to the public with doors opening at 7:30 a.m. CDT.

Mike Greenberg will host “SportsCenter” segments on April 25 and 26 from noon-3:00 p.m. EDT.

“Stephen A. Smith Show”
The “Stephen A. Smith Show” on ESPN Radio and simulcast on ESPNEWS will be live from the West Club at Nissan Stadium on April 25 and 26 from 1:00-3:00 p.m. EDT. The shows will include previews, reaction and analysis from host Stephen A. Smith on all the latest NFL Draft news from Nashville.

“NFL Live”
ESPN’s weekday NFL news and information show “NFL Live” will be live from The NFL Experience on April 24 from 1:30-3:00 p.m. EDT and on April 25 and 26 from 3:00-5:00 p.m. EDT. Wendi Nix will host all three days with NFL analysts Tim Hasselbeck and Rex Ryan and NFL Draft analyst Jim Nagy. Thursday’s show will also include special guest appearances by ESPN’s Trey Wingo, Rece Davis, Kirk Herbstreit and Sam Ponder as well as NFL Network’s Rich Eisen and Daniel Jeremiah.

“College GameDay”
ESPN’s eight-time Sports Emmy Award-winning “College GameDay Built by The Home Depot” crew of Rece Davis, Kirk Herbstreit, Lee Corso, Desmond Howard, David Pollack and Chris “The Bear” Fallica will preview the 2019 NFL Draft on April 25 from 5:00-7:00 p.m. EDT, with special guest Bobby Bones and college football coaches Lincoln Riley, Ryan Day and David Shaw. On April 26 (5:00-6:00 p.m. EDT), Davis will be joined by Howard, Pollack and Jesse Palmer, as well as special guest Jim Mora. On April 27 (11:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m. EDT), Maria Taylor will host the show with Howard, Palmer, Pollack and Mora.

“NFL Draft Countdown”
ESPN’s NFL Draft host Trey Wingo will preview Round 1 on April 25 (7:00-8:00 p.m. EDT) with Mel Kiper Jr., Todd McShay, Louis Riddick, Booger McFarland, Chris Mortensen, Adam Schefter and Suzy Kolber. On April 26 (6:00-7:00 p.m. EDT), Wingo will be joined by Kiper, McShay, Riddick, Mortensen, Schefter and Kolber.


Across Platforms: ESPN NFL Draft Projections in Virtual Reality
Leading up to and during this year’s NFL Draft coverage, ESPN will assess the potential of prospective players in virtual reality using ESPN Sports Analytics’ new projection model which incorporates grades from Scouts, Inc., NFL Combine metrics and athletically similar players’ past draft results (full methodology). The segments feature ESPN football analyst Dan Orlovsky breaking down stats and rankings in an innovative and customizable, virtual reality environment.

ESPN.com’s coverage of the 2019 NFL Draft will focus on signature voices Mel Kiper Jr., Todd McShay, Louis Riddick, Kirk Herbstreit, Mike Sando and others. Highlights include NFL Mock Drafts paired with “SportsCenter Specials,” pros and cons on every first-round draft pick from NFL Nation, plus Draft Day analysis from NFL Nation on all 254 picks and real-time data via DraftCast. Following the 2019 NFL Draft, ESPN will release Kiper’s Draft Grades (the foundation for “SportsCenter Special: Draft Grades” on April 28) and “Early Impact” Rookies (April 30), as well as McShay’s best picks for all 32 teams (April 27). Additionally, NFL Nation will break down the biggest post-draft questions for all 32 teams (April 29), and McShay will look ahead to next year with a Way-Too-Early 2020 Mock Draft (May 2).

The Undefeated
Senior NFL writer Jason Reid will lead NFL Draft coverage on “The Undefeated” – ESPN’s multiplatform content initiative exploring the intersections of sports, race and culture – from Nashville.

 Reid explores the history of black quarterbacks being selected in the first round of the NFL Draft.
 Domonique Foxworth presents his mock draft of the first 32 picks.
 Reid will live tweet the first and second rounds of the draft.
 Foxworth joins ESPN’s Twitter draft show.

ESPN The Magazine
On the cover of ESPN The Magazine’s NEXT issue is Nick Bosa, the NFL draft’s most disruptive force of nature. Senior writer Kevin Van Valkenburg’s cover story reveals how painful it was for Bosa to sit out last year at Ohio State—and how hungry he is to start sacking again. The issue also features “Beyond Measure,” senior writer Tim Keown’s look at Kyler Murray’s sizable expectations, including going No.1 in the draft, becoming a franchise player and completely blowing up decades of doctrine about short quarterbacks.

ESPN Social Media
ESPN social media will produce live shows, videos, graphics, and unique storytelling across Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, YouTube, and Facebook.

 Ever wonder what draft day is like for a projected Top 10 pick? “SportsCenter”’s social channels will have an exclusive, all-access Instagram takeover.
 “SportsCenter” on Snapchat will hit the road with host and former NFL player Andrew Hawkins.
 Mike Golic Jr. and Jason Fitz will join Mina Kimes, Field Yates, Domonique Foxworth and celebrity guests will provide on-site social coverage of Rounds 1-7. Hawkins will also be interviewing draftees backstage.
 ESPN’s Instagram Story experience will take followers behind the scenes: arrivals, fashion on the red carpet and green room access.
 With “College GameDay” on-site, the familiar hijinks of the crew will extend to the “College GameDay” social channels.
 ESPN’s YouTube channel will provide even more extensive coverage from this year’s draft, not only hosting the live stream each day but providing draft reaction and analysis, player profiles, and in-depth college football highlights.

ESPN Marketing
Tin Roof, located in the heart of downtown Nashville, will transform into the ESPN House during the NFL Draft. In addition to serving as a viewing party for fans, attendees will also be able to experience the football player journey at ESPN – from “College GameDay” to the NFL Draft, and ultimately to “SportsCenter” and Monday Night Football.

SEC Network
SEC Network will air an hour-long “SEC Now: Draft Special,” breaking down all stats and storylines behind the stars of SEC football as they prepare for the next step in their playing careers. Debuting April 24 at 2:00 p.m. EDT, the show features SEC Network college football analysts Matt Stinchcomb, who will serve as host, Gene Chizik and Matt Bowen.

ESPNLA 710 will broadcast an NFL Draft Special with Jorge Sedano, Keyshawn Johnson and former NFL linebacker Kirk Morrison on April 25 from 6:00-10:00 p.m. EDT. The broadcast will provide a pick-by-pick breakdown, followed by ESPN Radio’s national coverage of the NFL Draft.

ESPN International
This year, ESPN International will cover the NFL Draft with its most robust content plan to date, offering live television coverage of the NFL Draft to more than 31 million households in 61 countries and territories throughout Spanish-speaking Latin America, Brazil, the Caribbean, Australia, New Zealand, the Pacific Islands and Canada (on TSN).

 For the first time ever, ESPN will produce all three days of the draft in Spanish-language, which will air live throughout Spanish-speaking Latin America.
 Also for the first time ever, Brazil will produce and air all three days of the NFL Draft live in Portuguese language.
 The Caribbean and the Pac Rim region (Australia, New Zealand and Pacific Islands) will air all three days live; and on the first day, both regions will air the ESPN U.S. production on one channel and the ABC NFL Draft production on another channel, providing fans differentiated content and perspectives.
 ESPN will simulcast its television coverage via its broadband players, WatchESPN in Brazil, Australia, New Zealand and Pacific Islands, and ESPN Play in the Caribbean and Spanish-speaking Latin America.
 Immediately following the NFL Draft on Sunday, ESPN International will air the EA Sports Madden NFL 19 Bowl esports competition live throughout Spanish-speaking Latin America, Brazil, the Caribbean and in Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific Islands.


Thursday, April 25 (8-11:30 p.m. ET): NFL Draft, Round 1 – ABC, ESPN, NFL Network, ESPN Deportes, ESPN Radio

Friday, April 26 (7-11:30 p.m. ET): NFL Draft, Rounds 2 and 3 – ABC, ESPN/ESPN2, NFL Network, ESPN Deportes, ESPN Radio

Saturday, April 27 (12-7 p.m. ET): NFL Draft, Rounds 4–7 – ABC (simulcast of ESPN telecast), ESPN, NFL Network, ESPN Deportes, ESPN Radio

For more information on ESPN and the NFL Draft, visit ESPN Press Room.

The Walt Disney Company Remembers Dave Smith

Walt Disney Archives founder Dave Smith passed away in Burbank, California, on February 15, 2019. He was 78. Dave dedicated his four-decade career at The Walt Disney Company to preserving Disney’s precious treasures from film, television, theme parks, and beyond. Named a Disney Legend in 2007, Dave was beloved by fans around the world for his wide knowledge of the Company’s rich history, which he shared in books and through his popular magazine column “Ask Dave.”

© Disney

“I’m deeply saddened to learn of Dave Smith’s passing,” said Bob Iger, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, The Walt Disney Company. “He was the unsung hero of Disney’s history who, as our first archivist, spent 40 years rescuing countless documents and artifacts from obscurity, investing endless hours restoring and preserving these priceless pieces of our legacy, and putting them in context to tell our story. Dave was a true Disney Legend, and we are indebted to him for building such an enduring, tangible connection to our past that continues to inspire our future.”

© Disney

Dave was hired in 1970 by Walt’s brother—and The Walt Disney Company co-founder—Roy O. Disney, and his first responsibility was cataloguing every item inside Walt’s office suite, which had been left untouched after Walt’s passing four years prior. Thanks to Dave’s meticulously detailed notes and records, the Archives was able to restore the suite in 2015, and today Disney employees are able to visit and draw inspiration from this remarkable space. During his time as Disney’s Chief Archivist, Dave grew the Archives from a simple one-person department to a model among corpo­rate archives. He was regarded by fans and historians as the final authority on matters of Disney history, and was an active member of the Society of California Archivists. He served from 1980 to 2001 as Executive Director of the Manuscript Society, an international association of collectors, dealers, librarians, archivists, and others interested in manuscript material.

Born and raised in Pasadena, California, the child of librarians and educators, Dave earned a B.A. in history and a Master’s Degree in Library Science from the University of California at Berkeley. Before coming to Disney, he gained library and archives experience working in the Manuscript Department of the Huntington Library in San Marino, California, interning at the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C., and serving on the staff of the Research Library at U.C.L.A.

Dave wrote extensively about Disney history, with regular columns in Disney fan publications and websites, as well as authoring, co-authoring, and editing numerous articles and books on Disney history, including the official Disney encyclopedia Disney A to Z, Disney: The First 100 Years, The Quotable Walt Disney, Disney Trivia from the Vault, and The Ultimate Disney Trivia Books 1, 2, 3, and 4.

In October 2007, Dave was honored with the prestigious Disney Legend Award. A resident of Burbank, California, Dave retired in 2010 after his 40th anniversary with The Walt Disney Company and continued working for the next nine years as a consultant for the Company, with the title of Chief Archivist Emeritus.

The Walt Disney Company’s condolences and thoughts go out to his family and friends at this time.

The Walt Disney Company Announces Semi-Annual Cash Dividend of $0.88 Per Share

The Walt Disney Company (NYSE: DIS) Board of Directors today announced a semi-annual cash dividend of $0.88 per share, payable January 10, 2019 to shareholders of record at the close of business on December 10, 2018. The Company last paid a semi-annual dividend of $0.84 per share in July.

“Given our record financial performance in fiscal 2018, we are pleased to increase our dividend to shareholders, while continuing to invest for future growth with our pending acquisition of 21st Century Fox and the ongoing development of our direct-to-consumer business,” said Robert A. Iger, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, The Walt Disney Company. “This payment brings our total dividends for the fiscal year to $1.72 a share.”

The Company also announced that it has scheduled its annual shareholders’ meeting for Thursday, March 7, 2019 in St. Louis, MO.

About the Walt Disney Company:

The Walt Disney Company, together with its subsidiaries, is a diversified worldwide entertainment company with operations in four business segments: Media Networks, Studio Entertainment, Direct-to-Consumer and International; and Parks, Experiences and Consumer Products. Disney is a Dow 30 company and had annual revenues of $59.4 billion in its Fiscal Year 2018.

Forward-Looking Statements:

Management believes certain statements in this press release may constitute “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These statements are made on the basis of management’s views and assumptions regarding future events and business performance as of the time the statements are made. Management does not undertake any obligation to update these statements.

Actual results may differ materially from those expressed or implied. Such differences may result from actions taken by the Company, including restructuring or strategic initiatives (including capital investments or asset acquisitions or dispositions), as well as from developments beyond the Company’s control, including:

  • changes in domestic and global economic conditions, competitive conditions and consumer preferences;
  • adverse weather conditions or natural disasters;
  • health concerns;
  • international, political, or military developments; and
  • technological developments.


Such developments may affect entertainment, travel and leisure businesses generally and may, among other things, affect:

  • the performance of the Company’s theatrical and home entertainment releases;
  • the advertising market for broadcast and cable television programming;
  • demand for our products and services;
  • expenses of providing medical and pension benefits;
  • income tax expense;
  • performance of some or all company businesses either directly or through their impact on those who distribute our products; and
  • completion of the pending transaction with 21CF.


Additional factors are set forth in the Company’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended September 29, 2018 under Item 1A, “Risk Factors,” and subsequent reports. 

Disney Donates $500,000 to Support Those Impacted by California Wildfires

The Walt Disney Company has committed $500,000 to support relief and recovery efforts in response to the wildfires that continue to threaten California. The donation will provide support to firefighters on the front lines as they work to contain the fires and will assist California residents during this difficult time.

“The firefighters are true heroes, and we honor their tireless commitment as they continue to battle these devastating wildfires,” said Disney Chairman and CEO Bob Iger. “Our hearts go out to the families and communities that have been so severely affected.”

Disney’s donations will go to the California Community Foundation’s Wildfire Relief Fund, which supports intermediate and long-term recovery efforts from major California wildfires as well as preparedness efforts; and to the California Fire Foundation, which provides emotional and financial assistance to firefighters, their families and the communities they protect.

In addition to the donation announced today, contributions from Disney employees to eligible relief and recovery organizations will be matched dollar-for-dollar by Disney Employee Matching Gifts: A Program of The Walt Disney Company Foundation.

Remembering Stan Lee

From The Walt Disney Company:

Today, Marvel Comics and The Walt Disney Company pause and reflect with great sadness on the passing of its Marvel Chairman Emeritus, Stan Lee. With a heavy heart, we share our deepest condolences with his daughter and brother, and we honor and remember the creator, voice and champion of Marvel Comics.

“Stan Lee was as extraordinary as the characters he created.  A super hero in his own right to Marvel fans around the world, Stan had the power to inspire, to entertain, and to connect.  The scale of his imagination was only exceeded by the size of his heart,” said Bob Iger, Chairman and CEO, The Walt Disney Company.

Stanley Martin Lieber, aka Stan Lee, loved the written word from an early age, and wanted to craft stories like those in his favorite books and films, which he consumed voraciously. From a simple upbringing in the teeming landscape of Manhattan, young Stanley worked his way through a succession of jobs until the day he found himself an assistant at a comic book publishing company—Timely Comics.

In between refilling artists’ inkwells, erasing pencil lines from comic pages and fetching an untold number of lunches, Stanley expressed his desire to write and create tales of his own; in the May 1941 issue of CAPTAIN AMERICA COMICS #3, he got his wish. Readers would find a prose story in that issue, “Captain America Foils the Traitor’s Revenge,” sporting the byline of “Stan Lee.” A star was born.

As Stan’s roles and tenure with Timely Comics grew and evolved, so did the company itself. With Stan at its helm, Timely Comics morphed first into Atlas Comics and then into the name that would catapult it into legend and forever be synonymous with Stan Lee: Marvel Comics.

As Marvel’s Editor-in-Chief, Stan “The Man” Lee made his voice the voice of the stories themselves. Writing virtually every Marvel title and working with such luminaries as Jack Kirby, Steve Ditko, Don Heck, Gene Colan and John Romita, Stan began building a universe of interlocking continuity, one where fans felt as if they could turn a street corner and run into a Super Hero. A rich collection of characters grew out of his nonstop plotting sessions with his artists, including the Fantastic Four, Spider-Man, Thor, Iron Man, the Hulk, the X-Men, and more. Today, it would be almost impossible to find a corner of the Marvel Universe that Stan didn’t have a hand in.

Marvel fans found a friend in Stan Lee. He introduced the famous “Stan’s Soapbox” to speak directly to his readers, reaching a personal level rarely seen in comics of the day. Always pushing for new ways of creating comics, Stan also inaugurated the “Marvel method” of plotting and art, creating some of the most iconic stories in the industry to this day.

When something mattered to Stan, you felt it in his words, whether in an editorial or in the stories themselves. With passion for the medium, he helped refine and reform the Comics Code Authority and addressed hot-button issues like discrimination, drugs and intolerance.

Stan stepped up from his position as Editor-in-Chief in 1972 to tackle the role of Publisher at Marvel Comics, and while a strong succession of writers followed in his wake, his spirit and voice remained throughout the adventures that followed. His outspoken love for comics even extended to a series of college campus talks; given any chance to educate and illuminate on the industry, he took it. An entire generation of young readers expanded and strengthened their vocabulary and knowledge through Stan’s stories.

In later years, Stan took on new projects of his own outside of Marvel, but always kept one eye on the universe he created, watching with pride as it continued to grow and expand. Stan worked tirelessly to promote Marvel properties and characters to the film industry, and his spunky cameos in Marvel films and television series became an important part of his legacy.

Over the years, Stan was widely recognized for his remarkable accomplishments, receiving the National Medal of Arts, being inducted into the Will Eisner Award Hall of Fame and Jack Kirby Hall of Fame and being named a Disney Legend. He continued to work, write and enjoy life and creativity every day—and the world is better for it.

Marvel and the entire The Walt Disney Company salute the life and career of Stan Lee and offer their undying gratitude for his unmatchable accomplishments within their halls. Every time you open a Marvel comic, Stan will be there.