Forget 2026…Bob Iger is Staying Until 2031

Bob Iger wearing crown in front of spaceship earth
Credit: Disney / Photoshop and Canva Editing

It was reported earlier this month that Disney CEO Bob Iger is extending his contract until 2026. At the time, he stated that the deadline of 2024 was “putting undue pressure” on all the work that he had to complete. As such, he needed to stay on until 2026. Many in the media and Disney fans cheered the news as they viewed Bob Iger as one of the few individuals who could save the Walt Disney Company.

Bob Iger and Bob Chapek

Credit: Disney

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What Disney Didn’t Tell You

bob iger cast member town hall meeting

Credit: Disney

However you feel about former Disney CEO Bob Chapek or current Disney CEO Bob Iger, there is a little more to the story. As some may or may not know, when Bob Iger initially stepped down, he didn’t walk away from the company – or even his office. He remained vital to the board and the Walt Disney Company while Bob Chapek took the reins. This is part of why it was so easy for the Walt Disney Company to bring Iger back after the stock price fell and the battle with Florida Governor Ron DeSantis had begun.

RELATED: Following Bob Iger’s Contract Extension, Disney Stock is Tumbling Towards a One-Year Low

But this month when the media reported on Disney CEO Bob Iger staying until 2026, many didn’t know that paper work actually puts him in a position of power until 2031. Although he won’t officially be CEO (at least as of now) between 2026 and 2031, he will serve in an advisory role.

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

Credit: nagi usano/ Flickr

Christine McCarthy?


Credit: Disney

Some have speculated that CFO Christine McCarthy’s departure was partly due to theory that Bob Iger isn’t planning to leave the company – ever. And if you are someone who aspires to be a CEO someday, maybe the Walt Disney Company isn’t the best place to be.

RELATED: CFO Christine McCarthy is Out at The Walt Disney Company

United States Securities and Exchange Commission

The United States Securities and Exchange Commission filing for the Walt Disney Company states the following:

“The amendment also provides that the post-retirement security benefits to be provided to Mr. Iger for five years following his termination of employment under his current employment agreement will not be reduced for the approximately 11-month period such services were provided following Mr. Iger’s prior retirement on December 31, 2021.”

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What Does That Mean, Exactly?

Bob Iger and Mickey

Credit: Disney

When Bob Iger initially retired in 2021, he was given a five year contract in an advisory role. This amendment implies that the clock of his five post-retirement role will restart when he retires…again…in 2026.

So whoever takes the helm as Disney CEO in 2026 will do so while Bob Iger watches from the sidelines as a board member or at least a secret advisor. It’ll be curious to see who exactly would want that job, knowing your predecessor is a few steps away, perhaps judging you, maybe criticizing you behind your back to the board, or somehow make another attempt to steal your job and reclaim his throne as Disney CEO.

Eisner and Iger with Mickey

Credit: Disney

No matter who it is…one thing is sure…Bob Iger will be with the Walt Disney Company for the next eight years at least…

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About Steven Wilk

Steven has a complicated relationship with Disney. As a child, he visited Walt Disney World every few years with his family. But he never understood why kids his age (and older) were so scared of Snow White or Alien Encounter. He is a former participant of the Disney College Program (left early…long story), and he also previously worked in Children’s publishing, where he adapted multiple Disney movies and TV shows. He has many controversial opinions about Disney…like having a positive view of Michael Eisner, believing Return of the Jedi is superior to The Empire Strikes Back, and that Toy Story Land and Galaxy’s Edge should have never been built (at least not at Hollywood Studios). Every year for the past two decades, Steven has visited either Walt Disney World, Disneyland, Aulani or went on a Disney Cruise. He’s happy to share any and all knowledge of the Disney destinations (and he likes using parenthesis a lot…as well as ellipses…)