The Walt Disney Co. is doubling down on its stance on LGBT politics.
Undeterred by the recent backlash experienced by Anheuser-Busch and Target for similar marketing strategies—and its own tumbling stock price—the House of Mouse has teamed up with “gender-fluid” TikTok influencer Seann Altman to promote products from its Disney Style division.
In a July 21 video posted to his TikTok and Instagram accounts, Mr. Altman, a biological male, invites viewers to “get dressed” with him as he seeks to emulate Minnie Mouse’s iconic look.
Donning a red dress, black tights, yellow pumps, white gloves, and “bold” red lipstick, he declares, “I literally look like Minnie Mouse!”
The caption on the post, identifying it as a paid promotion, reads: “Minnie is ME! I fit right in with Mickey and his friends! @disneystyle.”
In turn, Disney Style shared the post via its TikTok account, captioning it, “a minnie moment” with the heart hands emoji.
Reactions to the ad were mixed, with some comparing it to Anheuser-Busch’s ill-fated partnership with transgender influencer Dylan Mulvaney.
“Disney clearly learned nothing from the Bud Light fiasco,” wrote Timcast News editor-in-chief Cassandra MacDonald in an X post.
While others called for a boycott, there were some who cheered the ad as “cute.”
The Epoch Times has contacted the Walt Disney Co. for comment.
Fall of the Giant
The new marketing strategy comes on the heels of Disney’s feud with Florida governor Ron DeSantis over a 2022 law that angered members of the LGBT community.
Florida’s Parental Rights in Education Act—dubbed by opponents as the “Don’t Say Gay” bill—prohibited teachers from discussing sexual orientation and gender identity with elementary school children through the third grade, among other provisions.
While the bill ultimately became law, it was with Disney’s public disapproval, even though polling showed most Americans supported the measure.
Since then, the entertainment giant has seen the downgrading of its stock, declining Disney+ subscribers, a string of box-office disappointments, and a downturn in ticket sales that has left its once-crowded theme parks stunningly empty.
In May, Disney also announced that it would be shuttering its new Star Wars-themed Galactic Starcruiser hotel in Orlando at the end of September—roughly 19 months after it opened.
Besides the Disney Channel, Disney also owns a host of other TV networks, including ESPN, ABC, FX, and National Geographic.
Addressing the company’s compounding woes in July, CEO Bob Iger said Disney would be “expansive” in its search for a solution, which could include selling off some of those properties.
“We have to be open-minded and objective about the future of those businesses … We’re very objective about their future as part of our asset base,” Mr. Iger told CNBC on July 13.
“There’s clearly creativity and content that they create that is core to Disney,” he added. “But the distribution model, the business model that forms the underpinning of that business—and that has delivered great profits over the years—is definitely broken, and we have to call it like it is.”
For the 100-year-old company, the Disney dream has begun to look more like a nightmare.
In an attempt to right the ship, the company ousted former CEO Bob Chapek last November, replacing him with his predecessor, Mr. Iger.
Hosting a town hall with employees, Mr. Iger assured that he had no desire for the company to be “embroiled in controversy” over politics as it had been under Mr. Chapek.
“It can be distracting, and it can have a negative impact on the company. And to the extent that I can work to quiet things down, I’m going to do that,” he assured.
However, the executive also reaffirmed Disney’s commitment to its “core values” of “inclusion and acceptance and tolerance.”
“We’re certainly not going to lessen our core values in order to make everybody happy all the time,” he added.
And if the company’s latest marketing strategy is any indicator, Mr. Iger appears to have stayed true to his word.
Naveen Athrappully contributed to this report.Original News Source Link – Epoch Times
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