Monday, April 4, 2016
Descending from the Throne: Disney COO Tom Staggs Resigns
The COO of The Walt Disney Company, Tom Staggs, is leaving the Mouse House in May...
Leaving May 6th, Mr. Staggs was long reported to be the favorite, the one to succeed Bob Iger as CEO of The Walt Disney Company, for Iger is set to retire in 2018...
So that begs the question... Who will take over?
Will it be Kathleen Kennedy? Probably not, for she's super-busy being the President of Lucasfilm, a studio that is of course on a real roll right now. By 2018, I suppose she could move on up, but who will take her place? She's fine where she is, what if someone who messes things up takes her place? You can't have the Star Wars wheel of the company possibly get a flat tire.
Who else, really? CFO Christine McCarthy? Film Chairman Alan Horn? I don't see anyone like John Lasseter getting to such a position, but stranger things have happened... Out of all those, I think either Kennedy or Lasseter should be CEO.
He's what Iger had to say...
"Tom has been a great friend and trusted colleague for more than 20 years. He’s made important contributions to this company, earning wide respect across the organization for his achievements and personal integrity. I’m proud of what we’ve accomplished together, immensely grateful for the privilege of working with him, and confident that he will be enormously successful in whatever opportunity he chooses."
Staggs said that his tenure was "a great experience to work with Bob during this dynamic era of unprecedented growth and transformation. I remain grateful for that opportunity, and I’m confident that Disney’s future will be just as exciting as its legendary past."
He's right about one thing... Bob Iger has transformed the company into a bigger beast than it ever was, acquiring Pixar, Marvel, Lucasfilm, and expanding several other areas of the company. Financially Iger has done so much good for the company, artistically he's done some good, some bad, some ugly. I just hope, I just hope... Whoever replaces him knows how to do things, and at least has vision.
Iger, to me, has been a decent-to-good CEO for the most part. There are some byproducts of his decision-making that I'm definitely not fond of, but the company is at a high each year. Despite my annoyances with the current regime (lack of original live-action films, 2D feature animation being killed again, et al.), there's a consistent stream of pretty good-quality stuff, whether it's Disney Animation, Pixar, Marvel, or Lucasfilm stuff, the TV and theme park sides of things, the whole nine yards.
His run has been pretty consistent, I can't say the same about Michael Eisner, whose administration got the company into some dire straits, leaving many a fan disillusioned and Roy E. Disney himself angry enough to launch a campaign against him. Ron Miller was promising, but the Saul Steinberg disaster and other problems derailed what could've been an interesting, if not ambitious run. That's to say nothing of what was going on at the studio throughout the 1970s.
So oddly enough, yes, I'd say our current Disney CEO is the best. But of course, even the best of this era won't come close to what went on when Walt was alive. Getting a good replacement might be tough...
The plot thickens.
What do you think will happen?