All Articles Tagged "disney"
While the rest of America is on pins and needles waiting for the season finale of Scandal, the folks over at Disney, the series’ network, are just happy Shonda Rhimes is on their team. The show has been a runaway hit for the network.
But as Forbes reports, it had been a journey for “the hottest woman in American television.” Not only does she put in an average 13-hour workday, but she multitasks like crazy. On the day of the magazine interview she was “having a dress-fitting for the White House Correspondents’ Dinner; picking songs and approving script edits for two of the most watched programs in prime time; taking her 1-year-old daughter to the doctor to investigate a mysterious bump.”
And she was writing the season finale to ABC’s hit Scandal, which has an enormous viewership of 8.3 million viewers each week and brought in an estimated $100 million in ad revenue this season.
If that weren’t enough multitasking, Rhimes has even got another magazine feature coming this week in the New York Times Magazine, that you can check out now online.
Rhimes is also the creator of ABC’s other hit show Grey’s Anatomy, making her literally the network’s savior from poor ratings. This 43-year-old single mother of two has become, as Forbes notes, “the Walt Disney Co.’s indispensable creator of an increasingly dispensable product: network television.”
Her two ABC shows are among the most valuable properties in television, pulling in more than $13 million in advertising for each week, just shy of $300 million a season, or about five percent of the network’s total revenue. Add to this tens of millions more for Grey’s syndication and licensing in other countries, which Disney shares with Rhimes’ production company, ShondaLand. Rhimes is pulling in a pretty penny as well. Forbes estimates she earned $12 million this year.
To offer some additional perspective — broadcast TV audience ratings since 2002 have dropped by half while Rhimes continues to pull them in. “Each week more than 90% of Grey’s viewers stay tuned for Scandal, which follows at 10 p.m., a time slot it has owned in the ratings since its debut,” reports Forbes. Scandal watchers generate a stunning 3,000 tweets a minute during broadcasts.
Besides money and ratings, Rhimes has made network history in more ways than one. She is the only African American show creator to have consecutive hit series. In fact, Scandal is the first network drama written and produced by an African-American woman with an African-American woman in the lead role. And black viewers have responded to this. It is the highest-rated scripted drama among African Americans, with 10.1 percent of black households, or an average of 1.8 million viewers, tuning in.
“What Shonda Rhimes possesses is this extraordinary instinct and compass for what our audience needs,” Paul Lee, the president of ABC Entertainment Group, told the magazine.
But Rhimes remains cautious and aware of television’s fleeting fame. “It’s not like I’ve got this power so I’m going to stomp around doing whatever I want,” she explains to Forbes. “The power is that the network trusts me.”
Click through on those two links to read more about the woman who is ruling network television. Scandal is on tonight. What do you think is going to happen? Make sure to come back to the homepage tomorrow for our recap.
We Are Doc McStuffins: Real Life African-American Physcians Team Up With The Hit Disney Series To Inspire Future Doctors
Disney is celebrating Black History Month with “We Are Doc McStuffins.” African-American doctors have partnered with the network to inspire children to pursue careers in medicine. Disney Junior’s animated Doc McStuffins debuted last year — and has become almost an overnight success. Targeted at kids ages two through seven, viewers get to see a portrayal of a little African-American girl dreaming of becoming a doctor.
Not only has the show inspired kids, but it has inspired a group of female African-American physicians to begin a “movement” they coined, “We Are Doc McStuffins,” reports Ebony. The group have since developed Artemis Medical Society, an organization of over 2,500 female African-American physicians and medical students representing 39 states and six countries. Its mission is to serve, nurture and celebrate a global sisterhood of women physicians of color through mentoring, networking and advocacy, according to the magazine.
Now the group has teamed up with Disney Junior, which will air “We Are Doc McStuffins” shorts, featuring Doc McStuffins alongside three real-life female African-American physicians and founding members of the Artemis Medical Society. They are Dr. Myiesha Taylor, Dr. Aletha Maybank, and Dr. Naeemah Ghafur.
“Doc McStuffins is important to me because I am that little girl. And it’s not just me. My female friends who are physicians have all been talking about Doc. We love what she represents… We didn’t have Doc or anything close to her on television when we were growing up. Many of the cartoons we watched contained stereotypes regarding minorities that would never be aired today,” Dr. Taylor told Ebony. “In 20 years we should see the first group of medical school graduates who will say their dream of becoming a doctor began when they saw their first telecast of Doc McStuffins…Won’t that be amazing?”
There’s nothing more precious than sharing Disney Time with your kids. But the magic doesn’t end with family time – it’s for parents and adults, too. With ultimate relaxation at world-class spas to championship golf to award-winning fine dining, there’s plenty of grown-up Disney magic around the entire Walt Disney World® Resort.
Time out – outside the Theme Parks
When it’s time to relax and recharge, take a little retreat to Senses – A Disney Spa at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort, a luxurious Victorian-themed oasis where your mind, body and spirit get the pampering they deserve. If your idea of down time is more like tee time, then there are four championship courses ready to challenge you, with magnificent tree-lined fairways, spacious greens and enough pixie dust to make your round memorable.
Ready to really shift things into gear? Get behind the wheel of a NASCAR-style car at the Richard Petty Driving Experience and punch it at speeds up to 120 mph down the mile-long, tri-oval racetrack! Of course, nothing complements a magical day like a special dinner. Even outside the parks, you have the world at your fingertips (and taste buds). Discover the bold flavors of traditional African, Indian and Mediterranean cuisine at Jiko – The Cooking Place. Or take in the fantastic fresh seafood and wondrous décor at Flying Fish Café, located at Disney’s BoardWalk Entertainment District. With an amazing selection of delectable choices throughout the Walt Disney World® Resort area, you’ll find just the right menu and ambiance to make that special meal unforgettable.
Grown-up memories that never get old
All four Theme Parks at Walt Disney World® Resort are great for bringing out the kid in you. But be sure not to miss out on all the grownup fun and excitement beyond the Parks. Enjoying a little special “me-time” without the family can be just as magical as your time together. However you choose to spend your Disney Time, the one thing you can count on is great memories that will last a lifetime.
Every Christmas season there is a scramble — fights in the store aisles even — as parents try to grab the latest toy for their child’s Christmas present. Other parents also struggle with finding a toy representative of their child. Well, this year the Doc McStuffins doll falls into both categories for African-American children. Not only is the toy, based on the star of this year’s breakout children’s TV show, a great gift for parents looking for Afrocentric toys, it is also this year’s best-selling doll.
“The new doll has even unseated Elmo as this year’s must-have holiday toy,” reports The Grio. The Disney series has been a TV hit since it premiered in March—it has even topped the mega popular Dora the Explorer as the top-rated cable TV show for kids, says the New York Daily News.
Created by Chris Nee, the character, Doc McStuffins, is a six-year-old African-American girl who treats sick toys. Nee reportedly developed the show for her son.
It has become popular beyond Nee’s dreams. And the product spinoff (the Doc McStuffins doll comes with her doctor’s bag and her friend Lambie) has been just as popular. Frenzied parents who are finding stores sold out of Doc McStuffins are “turning to online sites such as eBay to cop the doll. Online prices are reaching up the four times the $34.99 retail value,” reports The Grio.
Did you grab your Doc McStuffins before it sold out?
Unsure of what the special toddler in your life wants most for Christmas? Chances it may be the Doc McStuffins “Time For Your Check Up” doll, which is a doll based off of the main character of Disney television show “Doc McStuffins”, a six-year-old African-American doctor who cares for her sick toys. According to the New York Daily News, the adorable toy is being sold at a “record pace” this holiday season and parents have been in a complete frenzy as they scour toy store shelves for one of this season’s most sought after items.
“You can’t find that anywhere… We were at Toys ‘R’ Us asking them to look in the back,” said Amber, wife of New York Yankee’s pitcher CC Sabathia.
“McStuffins products are selling quickly,” says Toy ‘R’ Us spokeswoman Adrienne O’Hara. She also recommended that parents looking to snag one before December 25th should “visit stores early” in effort to catch incoming shipments.
It seems that Just Play, the company that produces the doll did not anticipate such a high demand for it and “didn’t have a lot of production lined up for the first-year run.” Analyst at BMO Capital, Gerrick Johnson predicts that availability will improve next year.
“I’m not sure I realized how much she would inspire kids,” expressed Chris Nee who is the show’s creator and is said to have created the show in an effort to demystify her son’s perception of doctors. Since the airing of its first episode back in March of this year, “Doc McStuffins” has been praised for its positivity and deemed as great show for young Black children because of its portrayal of a minority child in a role that we rarely see. That positivity has led Doc to become ”the top-rated cable TV show for tots,” and according to the Daily News, the girl at the center of it all ”has also unseated Elmo as this year’s must-have (and hard-to-find) holiday toy.”
The doll’s suggested retail price is $34.99, but of course opportunistic eBay and Craigslist sellers have hiked their prices up to $130 due to the toy’s limited availability. Can you really blame them though?
Have you heard about this adorable little doll? Was this on any of your children’s Christmas lists?
To celebrate her new book Profit With Purpose: A Marketer’s Guide to Delivering Purpose-Driven Campaigns to Multicultural Audiences, author and EGAMI Consulting Group founder Teneshia Jackson Warner teamed up with Dinner With Bevy‘s Bevy Smith for a dinner party/awards ceremony/”discotheque” (Smith’s word) at New York’s Beauty & Essex. The soiree was also focused on the cause-related work of the night’s honorees: P&G’s program My Black is Beautiful; Budget Fashionista and founder of digitalundivided (DID), Kathryn Finney; Black Girls Rock! founder Beverly Bond; celebrity stylist and host of ABC World News’ Cause Celeb with Phillip Bloch, Phillip Bloch; Disney’s Dreamers Academy, a program working in partnership with Essence and Steve Harvey to help high school students reach their career goals; and chef/reality TV star Chef Roble.
We’re going to have more from Warner about cause marketing and her book later this week. But the need for good works in the world is strong enough that we wanted to give the awards ceremony its own little shout out.
The 2012 Purpose Awards Dinner (#profitwithpurpose) was meant, according to the evening’s program, to celebrate with “a night of purpose” and “continue to drive the conversation.” The evening highlighted the social responsibility initiatives of the honorees, and the innovative approach with which they’re tackling their businesses, organizations, or passion projects.
When accepting his award, Bloch said, “When someone shines a light, we all shine a little brighter,” speaking to why it’s important for everyone to do what they can and then cheer that work to take it even further.
But before the accolades, one has to get started. In her acceptance speech, Bond said she only wanted to make a cool t-shirt when she started. Today, Black Girls Rock! has a televised awards ceremony that uplifts not just young girls, but women also.
When presenting the award, Warner thanked Bond for answering her calling. “We’re so happy that you said yes,” said Warner.
“We’re all connected and we’re all affected,” said Bond during her acceptance speech.
And if that wasn’t enough, there was good food, good music (Talib Kweli was DJing, with Bond jumping into the booth for a few minutes), and cocktails aplenty. Party with a purpose…
NBCUniversal’s telethon “Coming Together,” which aired on Friday, raised about $23 million for the American Red Cross, the company says. Besides the previously reported guests — Bruce Springsteen, Christina Aguilera and Billy Joel among them — celebrity guests included Mary J. Blige and Tina Fey. We’re happy to report that this isn’t the only charitable effort out there.
Disney and ABC have also partnered with the American Red Cross to raise money for the effort. As of about 1pm this afternoon, they’d raised about $9.25 million, including $3 million from Samsung. (The New York Yankees, U-Haul, and Home Depot are among some of the other companies that have donated millions of dollars to help.) For more info about how you can participate with that, click here.
While there are many uplifting stories about people pitching in, donations pouring in and life slowly getting back to normal in some areas, there are also disturbing stories about people who are still in dire need with supplies running low and temperatures dropping. ICYMI, there’s this story from the Times this weekend discussing the scary circumstances that people living in New York’s public housing system face, from a lack of water to crime at the hands of disgusting opportunists.
Digging a little deeper, a follow-up story discusses the belief among some victims that relief is coming to people based on socioeconomic status.
“Around the city, particularly in places already sensitive to the afterthought status conveyed in the Manhattan-centric characterization ‘outer boroughs,’ the accusations of neglect seemed colored by a growing belief that the recovery from Hurricane Sandy has cleaved along predictable class lines,” The Times writes.
Sadly, it goes without saying that those with money, those places that are centrally-located and the parts of town that are deemed “more important” (usually based on their economic importance) do get the most attention first in situations like these. Many years ago when New York City suffered a blackout, for instance, I lived in the Financial District of downtown Manhattan and promptly regained power the following morning while places in Queens and other parts of the city suffered much longer.
Infrastructure has been a hindrance. In some cases, relief organizations says they literally can’t get to the people who need it. But we need to make sure to continue to maintain a focus on the many thousands who continue to struggle to pull their lives back together, and work quickly to get them the basics they require. They need us and we must answer the call.
Disney, flexing its financial muscles, has purchased Lucasfilm from its owner, George Lucas, for $4.05 billion. Lucas, of course, is responsible for the much-loved Star Wars films and Red Tails, last year’s film about black pilots in World War II. Lucas says he’s going to give up the daily operations of the company and, yeah, I’m sure he is. He was 100 percent owner of Lucasfilm, so cha-ching!
The Walt Disney Company has spent more than $11 billion in acquisitions since 2006, first of Pixar Animation Studios, then, in 2009, of Marvel Entertainment. According to The New York Times, the Lucasfilm acquisition was a surprise, announced while the New York Stock Exchange remained closed in the wake of Hurricane Sandy. The sale includes other parts of Lucas’ empire, including Industrial Light & Magic, his special effects operation.
Adding to the excitement is the news that there will be a new Star Wars movie in 2015, with more films coming every two to three years after. The next movie is currently named Star Wars: Episode 7. Not so creative but the kids in the video below don’t really care (c/o Business Insider).
“Traditionalists are going to scream in horror at this news, but there is a silver lining. The new films will not be produced by George Lucas – who lost his touch a long time ago,” reads a separate Business Insider story.
This might be my only problem with the acquisition. With one mega-company owning everything, a blandness can set in across the industry. Will next summer’s popcorn movies be completely imagined by Disney employees? Will all our imaginations be captured by one wealthy corporation? Blech.
Besides that, maybe Lucas lost his touch, but there’s nothing that says Disney will re-invigorate the franchise. In fact, as evidenced by Pirates of the Caribbean, Disney has a tendency to suck the life out of some really great movie series.
Oh well, they can’t take YouTube away from us. Because I know you want to watch it again, scroll a little further down to watch a kid go ham with a “light saber.”
The American Medical Association’s “Physician Characteristics and Distribution in the U.S., 2012 Edition,’’ states that black female physicians made up less than 2% of nearly 1 million US doctors in 2010. That seems extraordinarily low, but think about it, how many black female physicians do you know? (Melanie from “The Game” doesn’t count!)
Could a Disney cartoon starring a young, black, female doctor improve those dismal statistics and encourage more young women to aspire to be doctors?
We soon shall see.
Disney is definitely taking a step in the right direction with “Doc McStuffins.” The show’s Wikipedia page describes Doc as a a six-year-old girl who, one day, wants to become a doctor like her mother. As a kid, she “pretends” to be a doctor by fixing up toys and dolls. A twist of Disney’s Toy Story franchise, when Doc puts on her stethoscope, toys, dolls and stuffed animals come to life and she can communicate with them. With a little help from her stuffed animal friends, Stuffy, Hallie, Lambie and Chilly, Doc helps toys “feel better” by giving them check-ups. Each 11-minute episode includes original songs and the “Time for your Check-up” song, and during ending credits, Doc gives advice to viewers about staying healthy. The show is described as a sophisticated, CG-animated series that doesn’t talk down to its young audience.
The series was created by Chris Nee. who isn’t black (or an Asian male as her name may lead you to believe), but the show stars several black actors including young black actress Kiara Muhammad and seasoned black actress Loretta Devine.
Nee says she created the series to demystify doctors for little kids after a particularly scary trip to the hospital with her son as she detailed in her interview with AfterEllen.com. However, Nee is credited for creating a show that is doing much more than that. The show is also portraying a young black girl in a role that we don’t often see. Boston.com reported that Nee said Disney encouraged her to create Doc as a minority character from the beginning and she hopes the series resonates with all of the kids who watch it, especially girls who tend to develop a negative view of science at a young age.
That’s a lot of pressure for a cartoon, but not far-fetched considering how powerful television can be in creating role models for young children. The American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry says American children spend an average of three to four hours every day watching television and children of color spend the most time viewing television, so this is definitely a show that Black families should consider actively supporting.
Last week, the show sent out a press release saying Doc McStuffins is a hit for kids age 2-7 and has been ordered for a second season on both the Disney Channel and Disney Junior. Disney will also introduce “Doc McStuffins” books, apparel, party goods and role play toys, dolls and accessories.
This is great news for a company that was once rightfully accused of ignoring the black children that watch their network and movies. And it’s even better news for the kids who are watching.
As Dr. Myiesha Taylor points out on her site Coily Embrace that sure young kids can aspire to be Beyonce, Lebron or even NeNe Leakes but kids need to know there’s more than entertainment, sports or fashion industry success, and instead pursue careers in higher education, medicine, or as CEOs of Fortune 500 companies.
Here’s hoping that Doc McStuffins is only the beginning of a new trend.
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Disney Junior premieres new animated television series, “DOC McStuffins,” for kids ages 2 – 7 on March 23, 2012 starring the voices of Kiara Muhammad as DOC; Loretta Devine as Hallie (stuffed hippopotamus); Lara Jill Miller as Lambie (the stuffed lamb); Jess Harnell as Chilly (the stuffed snowman); Robert Rist as Stuffy (the stuffed dragon); Jaden Betts as Donny McStuffins; Kim Brooks as Mom McStuffins, and Gary Anthony Williams as Dad McStuffins. The series features heartwarming stories that teach kids great lessons on self care, caring for others and chasing away any worries for kids over visiting the doctor.
“I was nervous at first,” Kiara said about her character having to also sing. “It was about six people listening. This is my first voice over and I’m really happy it’s a series.”
Learn more about the new series at Eurweb.com.
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