BREAKING NEWS: Ex-Disney boss Bob Iger makes shock RETURN as entertainment giant’s CEO, as his successor Bob Chapek quits after firm’s share price cratered following row with Ron DeSantis over ‘Don’t Say Gay’ bill
- Iger has worked for Disney for more than four decades – including 15 years as its CEO before he sensationally left just 11 months ago
- The entertainment giant’s former boss Bob Chapek quit the role after coming under fire for his management as Disney share prices plummeted
Bob Iger has returned as the CEO of The Walt Disney Company.
The entertainment giant’s former boss Bob Chapek quit the role after coming under fire for his management as Disney share prices plummeted after a row with Florida’s Governor over the ‘Don’t Say Gay’ bill.
Iger has worked for Disney for more than four decades – including 15 years as its CEO before he sensationally left just 11 months ago.
Susan Arnold, Chairman of the Board, said in a statement: ‘We thank Bob Chapek for his service to Disney over his long career, including navigating the company through the unprecedented challenges of the pandemic.
‘The Board has concluded that as Disney embarks on an increasingly complex period of industry transformation, Bob Iger is uniquely situated to lead the Company through this pivotal period.
‘Mr. Iger has the deep respect of Disney’s senior leadership team, most of whom he worked closely with until his departure as executive chairman 11 months ago, and he is greatly admired by Disney employees worldwide–all of which will allow for a seamless transition of leadership.’
Bob Iger is now the CEO of Disney – after he quit the role just 11 months ago
Former Disney CEO Bob Chapek said he initially chose not to speak out against Florida’s Don’t Say Gay bill to balance the needs of customers and employees
She added that Iger’s career at the entertainment giant from 2005 helped build Disney into ‘one of the world’s most successful and admired media and entertainment companies with a strategic vision focused on creative excellence, technological innovation and international growth.’
Chapek previously landed himself in hot water last spring when he took no public stance on Ron DeSantis’ Don’t Say Gay bill, which barred schools from discussing sexuality or gender with children between kindergarten and third grade.
According to an internal memo circulated at the time, Chapek felt the company could better advocate for inclusivity through its content and by working with legislators behind the scenes.
The memo’s revelations were met with outrage by Disney staff, who called Chapek’s decision weak and disappointing. Chapek later apologized in March, publicly decried the bill, announced Disney had paused all its political donations within Florida.
Chapek explained he wanted Disney to be brand that could ‘rise above’ the political fray, and serve as a beacon of optimism and harmony in the world.
‘What we try to do is be everything to everybody,’ Chapek said at the time. ‘That tends to be very difficult because we’re The Walt Disney Company.’
‘We certainly don’t want to get caught up in any political subterfuge, but at the same time we also realize that we want to represent a brighter tomorrow for families of all types, regardless of how they define themselves,’ he said.
After Chapek announced the halting of Florida political donations in his apology, Florida governor Ron DeSantis responded by beginning the legislative process of stripping away Disney’s special zoning status – known as the Reedy Creek Improvement District.
Reedy Creek comprises Disney World and its surrounding properties. Disney and the Florida government founded it as an independent jurisdiction 55-years ago, allowing Disney to operate as a county government does. It is run by a board selected by Disney and other companies on the land.
After DeSantis sudden decision, residents of the surrounding counties which would absorb Reedy Creeks debt sued the government,
But Disney quickly hit back at DeSantis, saying that there is a clause in its original contract that stipulates state or local governments will be responsible for its $1 billion bond debt when it is dissolved.
Chapek landed in hot water last spring when he took no public stance on Ron DeSantis’ Don’t Say Gay bill, which barred schools from discussing sexuality or gender with children between kindergarten and third grade
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