Bob Chapek to assume control of Disney’s operations with immediate effect
Robert “Bob” Iger unexpectedly steps down as CEO of the Disney empire. Replacing him is Bob Chapek, former Chairman of Disney Parks, Experiences and Products since 2018. The transition took effect immediately following the announcement.
According to variety.com, this is a move that not only shocked many both online and in the entertainment industry but was also not supposed to happen until the end of Iger’s contract on December 31, 2021. In order to comply with the terms, he will stick with the company as chairman until then helping to oversee Chapek’s transition. Of the change, Iger said simply, “With the successful launch of Disney’s direct-to-consumer businesses and the integration of Twenty-First Century Fox well underway, I believe this is the optimal time to transition to a new CEO”. He is also quoted as saying that he not only has the utmost confidence in his successor but also looks forward to working closely with him over the next almost two years.
During his time as CEO of the Walt Disney Company, Iger not only spearheaded the acquisition of Twentieth Century Fox (a purchase that delayed his retirement in June of last year) but also bringing Marvel, Pixar and Lucasfilm all under the Disney brand, opening Shanghai Disneyland and most recently, launching their new streaming service Disney+.
Of the new position, Bob Chapek is quoted as saying, “I am incredibly honored and humbled to assume the role of CEO of what I truly believe is the greatest company in the world, and to lead our exceptionally talented and dedicated cast members and employees”. Referring to his predecessor, Chapek stated that as a member of Iger’s leadership team, he was lucky to have a front-row seat to everything the man did. Going forward, Chapek plans to continue the same strategic pillars of technological innovation, creative excellence and international expansion as Iger did before him.
Prior to assuming his new title and role Chapek not only had a span of high ranking management positions along with film distribution and home entertainment along with big a part of opening Shanghai Disneyland and Star Wars Galaxy’s Edge in both Walt Disney World in Florida and Disneyland in California. Suffice it to say, while The man has many great accomplishments of his own during his time with the Disney Company, he still has massive shoes to fill. Only time will tell how he does and how his leadership affects the company.
Anyone who thinks today’s Disney CEO news is “sudden” hasn’t been paying attention. Bob Iger has had previous plans to retire. The Fox merger delayed his most recent plan to leave (in June 2019). Also, he’s going to be around for another 22 months…— Clayton Sandell (@Clayton_Sandell) February 25, 2020
To date, Chapek is only the seventh chief executive to lead the company since it was founded almost one hundred years ago in 1923.
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Megan Rickards is a prolific Staff Writer for Future of the Force. Aside from being extremely passionate about Star Wars, Batman: The Animated Series and the Arrowverse, Megan holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Literature and Writing. Follow her on Twitter @FindingHerSpot where she channels the Force frequently!