Major Disney shakeup: Struggling entertainment giant axes CEO, brings back Bob Iger

Entertainment giant jettisoned CEO Bob Chapek and lured Iger out of retirement after just one year.

Updated: November 20, 2022 - 11:23pm

Walt Disney Company shook up its management Sunday night, jettisoning CEO Bob Chapek and luring former chief Bob Iger out of retirement as the entertainment giant struggles with political fallout and fears of a post-pandemic recession.

"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," Board Chairwoman Susan Arnold said in a statement.

Iger, who led Disney for a decade, had yielded control of the company to Chapek in February 2020 and served as executive chairman until the end of 2021. His return stunned the corporate world.

Disney thanked Chapek “for his service to Disney over his long career, including navigating the company through the unprecedented challenges of the pandemic" and said Iger “has the deep respect of Disney’s senior leadership team, most of whom he worked closely with until his departure.”

The shakeup came just a week after the company announced hiring freeze and layoffs, signaling an increasingly gloomy economic outlook amid what analysts warn is a looming recession