Walt Disney boss Bob Chapek will remain in charge of the beleaguered Mouse House after the board unanimously voted to give him a three-year contract extension Tuesday.
Chapek had succeeded Robert Iger in February 2020, just months before the pandemic forced the company to shutter its theme parks.
He was quickly embroiled in controversy over Disney’s botched response to Florida’s “Don’t Say Gay” bill and the surprising ouster of Disney TV content chief Peter Rice.
But Tuesday’s decision — which extends Chapek’s contract to 2025 — served to squelch rumors Iger may return anytime soon.
“Disney was dealt a tough hand by the pandemic, yet with Bob at the helm, our businesses — from parks to streaming — not only weathered the storm, but emerged in a position of strength,” Disney chairwoman Susan Arnold said.
“In this important time of growth and transformation, the Board is committed to keeping Disney on the successful path it is on today, and Bob’s leadership is key to achieving that goal. Bob is the right leader at the right time for The Walt Disney Company, and the Board has full confidence in him and his leadership team.”
The board’s vote of confidence in Chapek comes just weeks after he fired Rice and installed Dana Walden. Insiders perceived the dismissal as a power move given that Rice was seen a potential threat to Chapek’s job.
“Leading this great company is the honor of a lifetime, and I am grateful to the Board for their support,” Chapek said in a statement. “I started at Disney almost 30 years ago, and today have the privilege of leading one of the world’s greatest, most dynamic companies, bringing joy to millions around the world. I am thrilled to work alongside the incredible storytellers, employees, and Cast Members who make magic every day.”