On Tuesday there was massive news in the entertainment world, as the Walt Disney Company announced that Bob Iger is stepping down as the CEO of the company effective immediately, with Bob Chapek taking over the role.
However, Iger will continue to chair the board and will oversee Disney’s creative efforts through the end of his contract in 2021. The move has nothing to do with anything negative; Iger simply felt it was time to move on. That’s nothing surprising for those who have been paying attention, since Iger has been planning to retire for years – only to keep delaying it for various reasons. So this isn’t anything surprising, nor do we need to read any conspiracy into it (though that won’t stop the internet…).
It remains to be seen how Chapek will run things as CEO, as he has been running Disney Parks and now will oversee the entire company. His promotion has received cautious reviews amongst fans, but we’ll see how he does.
No matter what, though, he has iconic shoes to fill. Bob Iger oversaw the most successful run in Disney’s storied history, as over his fifteen years as the CEO of the entertainment giant he grew the brand in incredible ways, steering the acquisitions of Pixar, Marvel, Lucasfilm, and FOX (among others), expanding Disney parks, launching Disney+, and overseeing tons of successful films (overseeing a company that had a hand in 26 different billion dollar films!). He has done incredible work, and it’s sad to see him go.
This will surely impact Lucasfilm, although I’m not sure we’ll see a whole lot of it right away. With Iger staying on for the next two years to oversee creative projects, I’m sure he’ll continue to work closely with Kathleen Kennedy and Lucasfilm to produce more projects.