Never pick a fight with the house that Mickey built. Who would have thought a review of Thor Ragnarok would be the source of their feud. Well, it wasn’t but it seemed that it was the final straw. The Los Angeles Times revealed why their publication was devoid of a review of the new Marvel film. It was because Disney has blackballed the publication for a nefarious piece done regarding the relationship between Disney and the city of Anaheim.
The piece discussed the ties to the city, the subsidies it received, incentives, rebates and protections it received from future taxes. The question the Los Angeles Times is placing is Disney paying its fair share? So the Los Angeles Times took to its Calendar section to reveal why the review was missing from Friday’s paper.
“Walt Disney Co. studios declined to screen the movie for The Times’ critics, citing what it called unfair coverage of its business ties with the city of Anaheim,” the statement read. “The Times will continue to review and cover Disney movies and programs when they are available to the public. Justin Chang’s review of “Thor: Ragnarok” will appear in Saturday’s paper.”
Deadline is reporting that in Sunday’s Times annual Holiday Movie Sneaks action, Disney’s upcoming releases will be missing from the publication:
“The annual Holiday Movie Sneaks section published by the Los Angeles Times typically includes features on movies from all major studios, reflecting the diversity of films Hollywood offers during the holidays, one of the busiest box-office periods of the year,” the Times will note, in a statement to readers. “This year, Walt Disney Co. studios declined to offer The Times advance screenings, citing what it called unfair coverage of its business ties with Anaheim. The Times will continue to review and cover Disney movies and programs when they are available to the public.”
Of course, later on, Friday, Disney responded to the reports of Disney blacklisting the Los Angeles Times and took a shot at their journalistic integrity. “We regularly work with news organizations around the world that we don’t always agree with, but in this instance, the L.A. Times showed a complete disregard for basic journalistic standards,” Disney said in a statement.
“Despite our sharing numerous indisputable facts with the reporter, several editors, and the publisher over many months, the Times moved forward with a biased and inaccurate series, wholly driven by a political agenda — so much so that the Orange County Register referred to the report as ‘a hit piece’ with a ‘seemingly predetermined narrative,’” Disney added Friday, giving no quarter. “We’ve had a long relationship with the L.A. Times, and we hope they will adhere to balanced reporting in the future.”
It appears that neither Disney nor The Los Angeles Times is going to back down. It will be a while before they end up on friendly terms. So, you will need to resort to online reviews for reviews or wait until critics from the LA Times see it with you during the weekend.