Disney Names Bob Iger as New CEO, Kicking Bob Chapek to the Curb Effective Immediately

He may have lost the battle, but it would seem once and future chief executive Bob Iger has won the Disney War.

In a surprise Sunday night twist, the Walt Disney Co. said Iger had been re-appointed to CEO, “effective immediately.” The move dethrones Iger’s former successor, Bob Chapek, who was named to the top job in February 2020, and just inked a new multi-year contract in June.

“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,” said board chairman Susan Arnold in a statement.

In an email to Disney employees, according to The Hollywood Reporter, Iger said he was returning with, “I must admit, a bit of amazement.” The 71-year-old had previously served as the head of the House of Mouse from 2005 to 2020.

Although he stepped back to allow Chapek to take the reins, Iger remained executive chairman through the end of 2021, suggesting to then-New York Times columnist Ben Smith earlier this year that he’d stuck around to “actively” shepherd Chapek through the worst of the coronavirus pandemic.

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