It seems Disneyland will have to wait a little more for fun times to return, as the theme park is set to remain shuttered until the end of Disney’s fiscal first quarter on 31 December 2020.
The news comes in light of the media conglomerate’s fourth-quarter earnings call, where a 61 per cent drop in revenue was recorded since its closure in mid-March. “We are extremely disappointed that the state of California continues to keep Disneyland closed despite our proven track record,” said Disney CEO Bob Chapek in response to the delayed re-opening.
The comment is a snipe at California’s state leaders – more specifically, governer Gavin Newsome – who are responsible for enforcing the state’s safety guidelines. Calling Disney Parks’ health protocols as “science-based,” Chapek brought up the example of Orlando’s newly-reopened Walt Disney World in a bid to urge leadership to “look objectively” instead of setting an “arbitrary standard” that has left many temporarily jobless. The Walt Disney world currently allows a maximum capacity of 35 per cent.
Given that the number of infected cases in California stood at nearly one million as of 11 November, however, the decision doesn’t come across as surprising in the least. While the company’s eagerness to bounce back from their financial strain is understandable, health should still, and always, be the priority.
Elsewhere, a handful of Disney parks have re-opened amid the global pandemic. They include the Shanghai Disney Resort in May, Disneyland Paris in mid-July, and Hong Kong in late September, with more expected to join the list in due time.