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Disney CEO Bob Iger ‘Disturbed’ by Writers Strike Development

disney ceo bob iger calls writers strike disturbing unrealistic actors strike sag aftra wga writers guild Bob iger Kevin mayer Tom staggs
Credit: nagi usano/ Flickr

After announcing a major extension of his contract as Chief Executive Officer of the Walt Disney Company, Bob Iger appeared on CNBC’s Squawk Box early Thursday morning. While Disney fans were widely happy and excited for Iger’s time as CEO of the company to continue, many were taken aback by some seemingly out-of-touch statements he made on the show in reference to the ongoing Writers Guild strike. The writers strike has lasted longer than 70 days, starting in early May, with the Screen Actors Guild expected to announce their own strike in solidarity any minute now.

So what exactly does Bob Iger find “disturbing?”

disney ceo bob iger calls writers strike disturbing unrealistic actors strike sag aftra wga writers guild

Credit: Josh Hallett/ Flickr

Disney CEO Bob Iger‘s overall sentiment is that the striking writers and actors are behaving unrealistically in reference to Hollywood and business. He understands that unions will fight to get as much as they can for their members but that businesses can only do so much.

Here’s his statement emphasizing the importance of the industry and calling the protest efforts “disruptive.”

It’s very disturbing to me. We’ve talked about disruptive forces on this business and all the challenges we’re facing, the recovery from COVID, which is ongoing, it’s not completely back. This is the worst time in the world to add to that disruption. I understand any labor organization’s desire to work on behalf of its members to get the most compensation and be compensated fairly based on the value that they deliver.

We managed, as an industry, to negotiate a very good deal with the directors guild that reflects the value that the directors contribute to this great business. We wanted to do the same thing with the writers, and we’d like to do the same thing with the actors. There’s a level of expectation that they have that is just not realistic. And they are adding to the set of the challenges that this business is already facing that is, quite frankly, very disruptive.

READ MORE: Writers’ Guild Strike Targets Disney CEO Bob Iger

disney ceo bob iger calls writers strike disturbing unrealistic actors strike sag aftra wga writers guild

Credit: SAG-AFTRA/ Twitter

Onlookers were a bit bewildered by his tone-deaf explanation, which pitied the struggling industry, but not the human struggle of the real people who make it possible. Critics were quick to cite his $27 million a year salary and nearly $700 million net worth as equally “disturbing” and “not realistic.”

The Disney CEO doubled down as he went on to say,

It will have a very, very damaging effect on the whole business, and unfortunately, there’s huge collateral damage in the industry to people who are supportive services, and I could go on and on. It will affect the economy of different regions, even because of the sheer size of the business. It’s a shame, it is really a shame.

Something is definitely a shame…

Check out some reaction tweets to Variety sharing the news on Twitter:

About Lana Porter

Lana has never lost a Disney Trivia night. Maybe it’s the hundreds of times she’s been to Walt Disney World Resort in Florida, her love for Disney’s ’90’s era hand-animated musicals, or the fact that she’s often likened to cartoon characters, but Disney and its magic have a special place in her heart. Her favorite Disney experiences include the EPCOT Food and Wine Festival, eating Mickey Bars on the PeopleMover, and crying during the Magic Kingdom fireworks show. One day she hopes to be chosen as the rebel spy on Star Tours. When Lana isn’t Park Hopping, she’s at home reading books of all topics, watching her favs on Disney+, or snuggling her two cats, which she swears are not named after Disney characters. She loves surprising people with her knowledge of the Marvel Cinematic Universe but admits she is still catching up with Star Wars. She is happy to combine her excitement for writing with her love for Disney-style storytelling and share what she can with the world!