Skip to main content

Bob Iger steps down as Disney CEO, and a new Bob stepped up

Bob Iger will step down from his position as CEO of Disney immediately, the company announced Tuesday, capping off 15 years of leading the growth of the company into an entertainment behemoth behind the world’s most important pieces of pop culture.

He’ll be replaced by Bob Chapek, who was previously chairman of Disney Parks, Experiences, and Products. The changes in the company’s executive structure are effective immediately. 

Related Videos

A Tuesday press release says Iger, who has been CEO since 2005, will become executive chairman and direct Disney’s creative endeavors through next year. 

Disney CEO Bob Iger
Walt Disney CEO Bob Iger

“With the successful launch of Disney’s direct-to-consumer businesses and the integration of [21st] Century Fox well underway, I believe this is the optimal time to transition to a new CEO,” Iger said in the press release. “I have the utmost confidence in Bob [Chapek] and look forward to working closely with him over the next 22 months as he assumes this new role and delves deeper into Disney’s multifaceted global businesses and operations, while I continue to focus on the company’s creative endeavors.”

While Iger was CEO of Disney, the company acquired Lucasfilm, Pixar, Marvel, and Fox, and debuted the successful Disney+ streaming service. Iger told CNBC in October that the company would focus on its streaming service going into the future as the streaming wars heat up.

Iger’s contract with Disney was supposed to be up in 2018, but the company decided in 2017 to extend Iger’s contract until through 2021. 

During a conference call on Tuesday, Iger said his reasoning for stepping down before his contract is up was because of his desire to prioritize the creative side of the company.

“Getting everything right creatively would be my No. 1 goal, and I could not do that by running the company on a day-to-day basis,” Iger said in the call.

Chapek will step in as Disney’s seventh CEO. He has been with Disney for 27 years, handling Disney’s theme parks and resorts in his most recent position. Chapek also served as the president of home entertainment and created Disney’s vault program.

“Bob Iger has built Disney into the most admired and successful media and entertainment company, and I have been lucky to enjoy a front-row seat as a member of his leadership team,” Chapek said in the announcement. “I share his commitment to creative excellence, technological innovation, and international expansion, and I will continue to embrace these same strategic pillars going forward. Everything we have achieved thus far serves as a solid foundation for further creative storytelling, bold innovation, and thoughtful risk-taking.”

Editors' Recommendations

Peacock drops new teaser for Casey Anthony: Where The Truth Lies
Casey Anthony speaks in a clip from Casey Anthony: Where The Truth Lies.

Casey Anthony isn't exactly the most sympathetic figure. Although Anthony was found not guilty of murdering her young daughter, Caylee Marie Anthony, in 2011, that has done little to deter the public from believing otherwise. And few have forgotten that Anthony took 31 days to report that Caylee was missing. Nor has Anthony put forth a convincing explanation for that troubling gap. But later this month, Anthony will get a shot at telling her side of the story in a new three-part Peacock miniseries, Casey Anthony: Where the Truth Lies.

Casey Anthony: Where The Truth Lies | Official Trailer | Peacock Original

Read more
Special look at Disney+’s Willow teases new fantasy adventure
Warwick Davis stares in confusion in a scene from Willow.

In 1988, the world was introduced to an aspiring sorcerer and  named Willow, played by Warwick Davis. The fantasy-adventure film Willow revolved around the titular character's quest to protect a special baby, Elora Danan, who would one day unite the realms against the evil queen Bavmorda. Over 30 years later, the Nelwyn sorcerer is back for a new adventure in the Disney+ original series Willow.

In a special look at the series, Willow receives a new mission to find the twin brother of Princess Kit (Ruby Cruz). Willow leads a disparate group of people to find Kit's brother and protect the world of Andowyne from impending doom. Along the way, they will also attempt to find Elora, whose identity was hidden in order to protect her from danger.

Read more
Director K. Asher Levin on genre filmmaking and his new horror movie, Slayers
Thomas Jane and Kara Hayward point crossbows in a scene from Slayers.

K. Asher Levin is first and foremost a fan of cinema. What started as a conversation to promote Slayers quickly turned into a discussion about genre filmmaking and the legendary filmmakers of the1970s. For the record, it's hard to disagree with Levin's point about how Martin Scorsese is the greatest genre filmmaker of all time. Nevertheless, Levin is a student of the game, and Slayers is his attempt to inspire a new generation of genre fans.

Written and directed by Levin, Slayers follows Elliot Jones (Thomas Jane), a vampire hunter whose sole mission is to hunt down the creatures who killed his daughter. After years of hunting, Jones has found those responsible for his daughter's death, but needs help infiltrating their layer. Enter "The Stream Team," a group of clout-chasing social media superstars who lack self-awareness and humility. When the team is invited to a billionaire's estate, they quickly learn the compound is a breeding ground for vampires. Forced to team up with Flynn (Kara Hayward), a gamer on the team, Jones conducts the hunt of a lifetime inside the house to avenge his daughter. Framed as a vampire movie, Slayers is also a unique takedown of the media and its capitalistic principles.

Read more