Dear Gossips,

Disney’s back on their bullsh-t, so guess what, so am I. This week, it’s news that recently restored CEO Bob Iger is restructuring Disney after the Bob Chapek era by dismantling Chapek’s Disney Media and Entertainment Distribution group, or DMED. Internally, DMED was unpopular because it wrested control from the creatives and executives put in charge of film and television, creating a middle-management structure that required approval for everything from budgets to which shows launched on what streaming service. Iger has axed DMED, though, and returned discretionary power to the heads of their respective divisions—Alan Bergman running Disney Studios, and Dana Walden on the TV side. In fact, they have both been promoted to Disney Entertainment co-chairs, putting them on equal footing, maybe the final brick to fall in the “film is better than TV” wall. 


While getting rid of middle managers is bound to make everyone happy, it’s not all good news. This week, Iger gave his first earnings report since returning to Disney and said they will be laying off 7,000 people—3% of the workforce—worth billions of “cost saving synergies”. Nothing anyone likes more than being fired for corporate buzzwords! Really, nothing Wall Street likes more than firing people for corporate buzzwords—Disney’s stock spiked 10% after Iger’s announcement, which included news that they’re going to make Toy Story 5, Frozen 3, and Zootopia 2. I say this as someone who likes Toy Story 4, but they’ve probably done all they can with that story. Zootoopia 2, though I am into. Everyone likes a witty cartoon fox. Don’t ask any questions about this.

This does, however, put an end to the proxy fight going on between Bob Iger and Nelson Peltz—aka Nicola Peltz-Beckham’s dad—for a seat on Disney’s board. Peltz is friendly with the reclusive Ike Perlmutter, Chairman of Marvel Entertainment, who was disenfranchised back in 2015 when Disney, under Iger, put control of Marvel Studios in the hands of Kevin Feige and Louis D’Esposito, who no longer had to report to Perlmutter on every decision, but could go right to Disney Studios then-honcho Alan Horn. Apparently, Perlmutter has been stewing about that ever since, and after Nelson Peltz started trying to get a seat on the board, Disney came out and basically called Peltz a dilettante and said he was working with Perlmutter.


It's all very business bitch boy drama, but it IS kind of funny to me that so much of big business is just down to cliques and who doesn’t want whom sitting at their lunch table. I mean, it’s NOT funny that 7,000 people are losing their jobs—most of the cuts are expected to come out of the old DMED group, but could potentially come from anywhere—but this is pure Succession. (Not for nothing, Waystar Royco is partially modeled on Disney.) Ike Perlmutter tried to out-Logan Bob Iger and ended up the Roman of the situation. Nothing worse than being the Roman. Except maybe being the Connor. Bob Chapek is definitely the Connor. 

Live long and gossip,