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This may come as a shock to you, but Iron Man and Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull are pretty popular movies. Apparently, that was big news to Disney CEO Robert Iger, who should really know better. He says one reason The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian is doing poorly in comparison to expectations is that the competition was just too strong.

Iger made this admission at a conference in New York, as reported by HR. While it’s hard to argue with that logic, it begs the question of what Iger and the folks at Disney expected when they decided to release their movie on May 16th. Did they not expect Indy would be pulling in the crowds? Why didn’t the suits release the film around the holidays, like the first movie, The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe? That movie, which garnered critical reviews similar to Prince Caspian, pulled in $745 million worldwide. Prince Caspian will be lucky to hit half that.

I’ve seen Prince Caspian, Indiana Jones, and Iron Man, so it is possible to work all three into your busy schedule. There are probably other reasons the movie has been lagging, but it doesn’t excuse Disney from the mistake that was made in scheduling. They should have known it was going to be a hard slog against tough competition. Seeing as the next Narnia movie is scheduled for release in May 2010, maybe they haven’t quite learned their lesson.

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