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Bob Iger Sends Note to Disney Employees After Replacing Bob Chapek as CEO

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In what could end up as the biggest entertainment news of the year, Bob Iger has found his way back to Disney. Late Sunday night, Iger was named the new Chief Executive Officer of The Walt Disney Company, a role he previously held from 2005 to 2020. This time around, Iger replaced his successor Bob Chapek after a tumultuous time atop the company that lasted just under three years. Iger wasted little time before hitting the ground running, sending a company-wide e-mail to the employees of Disney.

“It is with an incredible sense of gratitude and humility—and, I must admit, a bit of amazement—that I write to you this evening with the news that I am returning to The Walt Disney Company as Chief Executive Officer,” Iger wrote in his memo to Disney Cast Members.

He then applauded the company’s work throughout the pandemic, lauding them for keeping the company afloat.

“I know this company has asked so much of you during the past three years, and these times certainly remain quite challenging, but as you have heard me say before, I am an optimist, and if I learned one thing from my years at Disney, it is that even in the face of uncertainty—perhaps especially in the face of uncertainty—our employees and Cast Members achieve the impossible,” the executive added.

As of now, it’s unclear if Iger’s return is a permanent solution or just a measure to bridge the gap between Chapek and a new executive.

Iger’s full memo can be read below.

Dear Fellow Employees and Cast Members,

It is with an incredible sense of gratitude and humility—and, I must admit, a bit of amazement—that I write to you this evening with the news that I am returning to The Walt Disney Company as Chief Executive Officer.

When I look at the creative success of our teams across our Studios, Disney General Entertainment, ESPN and International, the rapid growth of our streaming services, the phenomenal reimagining and rebound of our Parks, the continued great work of ABC News, and so many other achievements across our businesses, I am in awe of your accomplishments and I am excited to embark with you on many new endeavors.

I know this company has asked so much of you during the past three years, and these times certainly remain quite challenging, but as you have heard me say before, I am an optimist, and if I learned one thing from my years at Disney, it is that even in the face of uncertainty—perhaps especially in the face of uncertainty—our employees and Cast Members achieve the impossible.

You will be hearing more from me and your leaders tomorrow and in the weeks ahead. In the meantime, allow me to express my deep gratitude for all that you do. Disney holds a special place in the hearts of people around the globe thanks to you, and your dedication to this company and its mission to bring joy to people through great storytelling is an inspiration to me every single day.

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