Treasure Planet Strands Disney's Earnings

Walt Disney Co. ( DIS) has lowered its latest fiscal fourth-quarter earnings after ticket sales for the film Treasure Planet were lower than expected, Bloomberg.com reported.

Disney also said federal regulators are investigating its disclosures about outside directors whose relatives had ties to the company.

The company said that former U.S. Senator George Mitchell was named presiding director and that the board would meet twice annually without management present, Bloomberg reported. Some investors have raised questions about the board's independence.

Treasure Planet flopped over its five-day, Thanksgiving weekend opening, recording ticket sales of $16.6 million, WSJ.com reported. Disney said it must take a $74 million pretax writedown for the fourth quarter of 2002 to reflect a lower book value for the movie. That will reduce net income for the quarter ended Sept. 30 by $47 million, or 2 cents a share.

Disney shares closed down 85 cents, or 4.3%, to $18.54 in NYSE trading.

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