Mickey Mouse has had a busy year of retro revivals, mortal box office returns, and reaching outside of its rich character portfolio for theme park expansion ideas.
Did I mention that Disney
The result is that Disney is trading marginally lower this year on the mixed -- though largely positive -- developments at the family entertainment giant.
Exotic ports of call
The year began encouragingly enough, with Disney christening its third and fanciest cruise ship -- Disney Dream -- in January. A month later, Disney posted better-than-expected quarterly results for its fiscal first quarter with operating profits posting double-digit gains at four of its five segments.
Disney's stock was at a multiyear high, and the good cheer was trickling through the family-oriented leisure universe. Regional amusement park operators Cedar Fair
The house of mouse celebrated its buoyant springtime run by breaking ground at Shanghai Disneyland in April, but the good times wouldn't last.
Draw your own conclusion
In May, Disney did something that it has only done four times in Iger's six-year reign at the helm: It missed Wall Street's quarterly profit target.
The media giant was also sputtering on the theatrical animation front. Mars Needs Moms was a box-office bomb. Would Cars 2 save the day? The sequel had no problem drawing audiences, but it was the first Pixar flick that film critics generally panned.
Computer animation giants would routinely turn to sequels as low-lying fruit, but even DreamWorks Animation's
Searching for success
Angling for popcorn-munching landlubbers, the fourth installment in Disney's Pirates of the Caribbean series fared well.
Its new timeshare resort in Hawaii had some embarrassing accounting hiccups, but theme park attendance was moving in the right direction.
The opening of Blackstone Group's
The final report card holds up for Disney, despite the slightly lower share price. Revenue and profitability inched higher in fiscal 2011, and Disney did manage to overcome the weak fiscal second-quarter report to beat analyst profit targets in its three other quarters.
It wasn't a great year, but it'll do for one that was more goofy than Goofy.
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Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz calls them as he sees them. He does not own shares in any of the stocks in this story, except for Disney. Rick is also part of the Rule Breakers newsletter research team, seeking out tomorrow's ultimate growth stocks a day early.