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Uh-oh. Walt Disney (NYSE: DIS ) is killing part of the Star Wars franchise it acquired in October for $4 billion. The good news? Like Obi-Wan Kenobi, the dead will rise soon enough, and in perhaps a more powerful form.
Specifically, Disney has closed 31-year-old game-development division LucasArts and laid off some 200 employees who worked there, The Wall Street Journal reports. New Star Wars universe games -- presuming any are under consideration -- will be published elsewhere.
It's a good move, says Tim Beyers of Motley Fool Rule Breakers and Motley Fool Supernova in the following interview with The Motley Fool's Erin Miller. Researcher NPD put LucasArts' revenue at just $55 million last year, down sharply from $175 million in 2006.
What's more, Tim says, Disney is the world's largest brand licensor and as such could extract good terms from the likes of Electronic Arts (NASDAQ: EA ) and Activision Blizzard (NASDAQ: ATVI ) , both of which have long, successful histories with developing games around licensed brands. The possibility of such a deal may help explain why Disney stock reached another new high this week.
Are you more bullish on Disney's prospects after seeing this news? What about Activision and EA? Please watch this short video to get Tim's full take, and then leave a comment to let us know whether you'd buy or sell Disney stock now, and why.
It's easy to forget that Walt Disney is more than just the House of Mouse. True, Disney amusement parks around the world hosted more than 121 million guests in 2011. But from its vast catalog of characters to its monster collection of media networks, much of Disney's allure for investors lies in its diversity, and The Motley Fool's premium research report lays out the case for investing in Disney today. This report includes the key items investors must watch as well as the opportunities and threats the company faces going forward. So don't miss out -- simply click here now to claim your copy today.