Disney CEO Bob Iger should have stayed in retirement. These are not good days for the former family-friendly entertainment giant. He can only blame himself. When he left in 2020 as CEO, he passed the baton to Bob Chapek, but he never really retired. He shadowed Chapek, making it clear to the Disney brass that he was still the man.
Chapek needlessly picked a fight with Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis. He was upset about the governor’s determination to stop the moral corruption of children in the school curriculum. He lost. Predictably, Iger was ready to resurface. He must now regret doing so.
Disney’s stock has plummeted to a nine-year low. Its streaming business, films and TV networks are in trouble. Most of the summer movies bombed. It lost north of $900 million over its last eight films. One big reason is its insistence on tailoring some of its children’s movies to please gay activists. This doesn’t go over big in the United States, never mind in the Middle East; they ban this trash.
Does Disney get it? There are signs that it does, but no one should trust Iger or his henchmen.
On September 19, Disney investors met at Walt Disney Resort in Orlando. One of the things on their mind was the alienation of families—just how much gay and trans fare can mothers and fathers put up with? Whatever happened to Snow White and the Lion King?
Iger could not dodge the issue. He tried to calm the waters by telling investors he will “quiet the noise,” meaning he got the memo about overdoing the LGBTQ agenda.
This is not the first time Iger has conceded that Disney has gone off the reservation. In July, he said in an interview that “the last thing that I want for the company is for the company to be dragged into any culture war.” In April, he told one nervous investor, “Our primary mission needs to be to entertain… and to have a positive impact on the world. I’m very serious about that. It should not be agenda-driven.”
No one “dragged” Disney into the culture wars—it dove in head first. That is why the Catholic League released a documentary at the beginning of the year, “Walt’s Disenchanted Kingdom,” that details how it changed from its noble origins into a vehicle for gay and trans propaganda. Given the huge audience we reached, we are confident that we played a role in the pushback.
In March, 2022, Karey Burke, the entertainment chief in charge of content (she now works for another Disney holding, 20th Television) boasted that she wants at least half of all future Disney characters to be LGBTQ or racial minorities. For her, it was personal. She said in a Zoom call, “I’m here as the mother of two queer children, actually, one transgender child and one pansexual child, and also as a leader.”
It would be wrong for conservatives to conclude that Disney has moved beyond Burke’s vision. In the April interview that Iger gave saying he doesn’t want any more of the culture wars, he had the audacity to say that it is “preposterous” to claim that Disney “is in any way sexualizing our children.” Then why did the gay-crazy New York Times accuse Disney of just that?
There are rumors that Disney is going to sell some of its acquisitions. Some are saying the entire company may be for sale. We’ll see. But if Iger does not tap the brakes on the company’s anti-family fare—throwing Burke’s plan in the garbage—the end may come sooner than he thinks.
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Contact Disney’s communication chief: Kristina.Schake@disney.com