Disney Parks chairman Josh D'Amaro comments on Star Wars Galactic Starcruiser closure

May 22, 2023 in "Star Wars Galactic Starcruiser"

Posted: Monday May 22, 2023 9:51am ET by WDWMAGIC Staff

As part of today's JP Morgan Global Technology, Media & Communications Conference, Disney Parks Chairman Josh D'Amaro addressed the recent announcement that Disney will close the Star Wars Galactic Starcruiser later this year.

Josh said, "It didn't perform exactly like we wanted it to perform. Despite the fact it was a never before seen experience and raised the bar, we thought it was time to sunset this in September."

According to D'Amaro, Disney will accelerate depreciation on the Starcruiser hotel by $150 million in both Q3 and Q4 2023.

The final voyage for Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser will take place September 28-30, 2023, and has already sold out. Disney is contacting guests booked on the cancelled Starcruiser voyages and says it hopes to relocate Cast Members to other roles at Walt Disney World.

 

Carrying a lofty price tag of around $5200 for the two-day, two-night experience, Star Wars Galactic Starcruiser launched on March 1 2022. After stronger-than-expected initial sales, Starcruiser bookings quickly stalled, forcing Disney to look to save costs and boost reservations.

Most recently, Disney began canceling voyages in the summer that had very few bookings, moving guests to other dates with a 50% discount for the inconvenience. Disney also offered various discounts, including Annual Passholder and Disney Vacation Club deals.

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Disstevefan12 days ago

HA! you got me! PERFECT!!! I love when Universal does things like this!!

danlb_20002 days ago

Looks like this is from the Universal Men In Black ride queue.

Disstevefan12 days ago

Is this real or a meme?

JoeCamel2 days ago

And trying to get back on topic.......

cjkeating3 days ago

Just to help correct this slightly, may still not be 100% accurate. Updates in bold. I think the only full face character actors on each voyage were: Captain Riyola Keevan Cruise Director Lenka Mok Sammie Gaya Raithe Kole Sandro Alimander Rey - day 2 only First Order Lieutenant Harman Croy First Order Colonel Grav Talis - on screen only Then a list of characters that can be done by multiple actors on the same voyage SK-62O Ouannii - believed to have been played by 2 actors per day due to the prosthetics The Saja - their numbers varied cruise by cruise and potentially day by day, 4 per day would be a good average Chewbacca - sporadically throughout both days Kylo Ren - grand finale only First Order Stormtroopers (x2) - 2 on day 1, 4 on day 2 Also I would say that all characters were 'at work' for 12 hours a day. Their start times on stage were staggered and some would be on stage more or less based on their makeup/prosthetics requirement. I did some rough maths using your $100 figure and came to the following figures... Group 1 Actors - $18,000 Group 2 Actors - $24,000 So $40,000 is probbaly a good figure. I'd love for someone to share how many on stage 'blue shirts' were on the ship each day as it felt heavily staffed but then many of them were multi-skilled. Then add in off stage staff like the chefs, technicians, transport drivers, security etc it increases further. When calculating the 'total cost' to Disney to employ the staff including all training, benefits, tax etc and looking at all backstage, admin, managerial support roles etc I could see the daily Starcruiser staff cost being in the $100,000 range.

danlb_20003 days ago

These are just the actors, how many other CMs are needed on stage during a voyage? $100 may not be unreasonable because you have to count salary and benefits.

asianway4 days ago

Only if an illness necessitated a swap

Purduevian4 days ago

Understood. I guess it's not as easy as saying Sammy makes $100 an hour for a 12 hour shift 7 days a week ($8400 a week). However, it might more be like both Sammys make $4500 a week whether it's there 4 day week or their 3 day week ($9000 for both Sammys)

flynnibus4 days ago

Sammy 2 and Sammy 1 are both on contract and on staff even if they aren't working that day :) That's my point. That employee is costing you overhead even when off shift because you need him trained and committed to you. You have multiple people on staff for the role.

Purduevian4 days ago

Right... but if Sammy 1 is working Cruise A, C, and E. and Sammy 2 is working Cruise B, D, and F... There is still only 1 Sammy per day working/Cruise. I don't think they ever had multiple actors playing the same face character on the same cruise but I could be wrong.

natatomic4 days ago

I think “hours” are calculated really weird with equity actors. My husband is in that union, and while he is not scheduled 8 hours (it’s closer to 6, and even then, most of that time is breaks), he gets paid 8 hours. The Nemo Show is something crazy - like, they do something like 3 shows and get paid 8 hours. I might be off on that one, I can’t remember exactly what it is, but it’s something like that. I couldn’t even begin to imagine how something like the Cruiser cast was calculated. ETA: I think it’s called “show value.” Each show had a specific show value of X number of hours. Someone can correct me if I’m wrong. I’ll ask my husband when he gets home if I remember. 🙃

flynnibus4 days ago

Keeping it simple... remember there is more than one person who fills a role. People don't work every shift themselves, etc. People are allowed to take days off, etc. But those people are still on payroll, etc.

Purduevian4 days ago

Yeah I was just trying to count the actual actors and using "worse case" scenario. Outside of the actors, there was a support team (not sure how many people that would be). However, I guess I was just trying to show that I can't see the actual actors costing over ~$11k a day which doesn't seem like the back breaker many people make it out to be.

flynnibus4 days ago

Plus.. you are basically counting their stage time.. not your labor investment to meet that obligation :)