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What Time Warner Inc (TWX) Should Discover From The Walt Disney Company (DIS)

Without the willingness to create a film where Batman and Superman team up, representing a merging of the more realistic and more magical sides of the DC universe, then a Justice League film, which could consist of Green Lantern, Wonder Woman, Flash and Aquaman, would be impossible. This has worked before in Warner Bros.’ animated series, but a live action version would be a monstrous undertaking. With Christian Bale and Christopher Nolan out of the picture, a new Batman must be cast, and new films featuring Wonder Woman and the other characters would have to be made.

In other words, if Time Warner wants to replicate Marvel’s success, it has to create an overarching story over multiple franchises with long-term plans to converge them all into a single movie.

Not all is lost yet

If The Man of Steel proves to be successful, then Time Warner shouldn’t simply let the film continue into another self-contained trilogy that eventually concludes with both the main star and director leaving the franchise. It needs to use its sequels to tie together the rest of the DC Universe just as The Walt Disney Company (NYSE:DIS) has with The Avengers. With Superman usually being regarded as the leader of the Justice League, then its sequels could open up a whole new exciting universe of comic book films, as dynamically connected as the books on which they are based. If Time Warner Inc (NYSE:TWX) is successful, then the returns could be enormous, as seen in this breakdown of Time Warner’s business segments in fiscal 2012.




Revenue





Y-O-Y Growth





Operating Income





Y-O-Y Growth





Networks




$14.2 billion



+4.0%



$4.9 billion



+10.0%




Film and TV




$12.0 billion



-5.0%



$1.2 billion



-3.0%




Publishing




$3.4 billion



-7.0%



$0.5 billion




-20.0%


Source: Time Warner Annual Report

If Time Warner can unveil a full-fledged DC movie universe in the next two or three years, then its Film and TV gains can easily offset any weakness in its lagging Publishing segment. In addition, returns from its Hobbit trilogy should also boost the segment’s top and bottom line growth even more.

Therefore, Time Warner needs to hurry and round up the miners to start digging into its DC Comics goldmine.

The article What Time Warner Should Learn from Disney originally appeared on Fool.com and is written by Leo Sun.

Copyright © 1995 – 2013 The Motley Fool, LLC. All rights reserved. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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