Bob Iger Called “Extremist” by Angry Shareholder

Bob Iger called Extremist
Credit: Disney

On April 3, The Walt Disney Company held its Annual Shareholders Meeting, in which shareholders voted on a number of important issues. During the meeting, shareholders voted to keep all the members of Disney’s Board of Directors on the board. They also voted heavily against activist investor Nelson Peltz, the self-proclaimed “bully” billionaire, who was vying for multiple board seats. The vote to keep Mr. Peltz away from making decisions was a strong boost in shareholders’ support of Disney CEO, Bob Iger.

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Credit: Disney / Canva

Related: The Danger of Disney’s Hostile Billionaire, Nelson Peltz

Over the past few years, Disney has worked hard to be more inclusive when it comes to both its theme parks and its entertainment. In 2021, Disney made a big change to its costuming guidelines in the parks. The new rules allowed cast members to express themselves by being able to showcase tattoos and removed all gender-based guidelines. This meant that cast members could wear the uniform they felt most comfortable in, regardless of their gender.

nick Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique disneyland fairy godmother's apprentice

Credit: Kourtni Faber, TikTok

In terms of its films and television shows, Disney creatives worked to be more inclusive when it came to characters and storylines. Disney began to feature more diverse characters, different types of families, and different kinds of relationships. They even included a trans character in the Big Hero 6 (2014) spinoff series, Baymax!.

This, of course, has led to a lot of arguing among Disney fans. There are those who praise the company for making a more inclusive place. Then there are those who constantly rip the company, accusing it of being “woke”, trying to push an agenda, and moving too far away from the “traditional” content they are used to.

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Credit: Ashley Carter, Twitter

During the Shareholders’ Meeting, multiple proposals were brought forward that targeted Disney’s more progressive policies and political donations. One shareholder attacked Disney because the company’s healthcare plan includes support and coverage for medical expenses related to gender identity and gender reassignment surgery.

Another shareholder made it clear that he despised Iger and nearly everything that Disney was doing. He attacked the CEO, going so far as to call him extreme and his views “narrow”. Most of the shareholder’s statement targeted Disney’s inclusive policies, saying that the company was failing because of it.

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Credit: Disney

However, Iger stood his ground, saying that Disney is not trying to push any kind of “agenda.” They are simply creating content that better reflects the world we live in.

“Our job is to entertain first and foremost, and by telling great stories, we continue to have a positive impact on the world and inspire future generations, just as we’ve done for over 100 years. Disney has always been and will continue to be a source of hope, joy and optimism for people of all ages. We’re committed to telling stories that reflect the world around us and using those stories to entertain people from all walks of life.”

“I’ve always believed that we have a responsibility to do good in the world. But we know our job is not to advance any kind of agenda. So as long as I’m in the job, I’m going to continue to be guided by a sense of decency and respect. And we will always trust our instincts.” 

guests, epcot, snacks

Credit: Disney

Despite the near-constant criticism being lobbed at Disney for being more inclusive, Iger and Disney’s creatives stand by their decision to create content that showcases all types of people. Disney has also said that it hopes to focus on creating even more inclusive content in the coming years.

Disney will also continue to honor the movies that made it one of the premier entertainment companies in the world. This November, Disney will be releasing its highly-anticipated sequel, Moana 2. The company is also moving full steam ahead on several live-action remakes, including Moana (2016), Lilo & Stitch (2002), Snow White (1937), and Hercules (1997).

Do you Bob Iger is too extreme? Let us know in the comments!

About Krysten Swensen

A born and bred New England girl living the Disney life in Southern California. I love to read, to watch The Golden Girls, and love everything to do with Disney and Universal. I also love to share daily doses of Disney on my Disney Instagram @BrazzleDazzleDisney!

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