Bob Chapek Forgets Disney’s Motto During Speech, Compares Self to Iron Man

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Credit: Disney

The current Disney CEO stumbled a bit and mixed up two of the most popular theme Park destinations on earth.

bob chapek
Credit: Screenshot via Annual Shareholders Meeting

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If you have visited the Disney Parks and Resorts in the last few years or been a part of the Disney community in general, you will surely know the name, Bob Chapek. Chapek serves as the company’s current CEO, taking over Bob Iger’s multi-decade tenure in early 2020, perhaps the worst time to take over one of the largest corporations in the world.

The exchange of power between Iger and Chapek was swift and came as a bit of a surprise, especially since Bob Chapek ended his position with the company earlier than expected. Since becoming CEO, Chapek has overseen many exciting projects at the Disney Parks, primarily at the Walt Disney World Resort, with expansions such as the new Guardians of the Galaxy ride, the upcoming TRON coaster as well as the incredible Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser Resort/hotel.

For almost four decades, only two CEOs served The Walt Disney Company, with Michael Eisner serving from 1984 to 2005 and Bob Iger from 2005 to 2020. Now with two years on the job under his belt, Bob Chapek has at least gotten Disney back on track in terms of profits and revenue after the disastrous last few years the company faced due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic

Bob Chapek at Goldman Sachs
Credit: Goldman Sachs

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Despite a rather controversial tenure as CEO so far, Chapek actually spoke at the University of Indiana’s commencement ceremony Saturday morning. Chapek is a graduate himself from the school and even received an honorary doctorate. The ceremony, which can be viewed in full here, saw Disney CEO Bob Chapek give a passionate speech detailing his triumphs and faults as well as his determination through it all.

“I personally knew that I wanted something different, and I knew because there was one thing we did as a family every year, that I know something had to happen,” Chapek said. “And that thing was our annual visit to Walt Disney World.”

“So when my dad pointed the hood of our old Chevy down I-65, to drop me off in Bloomington, my mind was made up,” Chapek said. “IU was my ticket to a new life. I was kind of desperate. Desperate to demonstrate my worthiness and desperate not to waste a dime of my parents’ money on a school that was frankly testing my limits at the time,” Chapek said. “But that desperation turned to determination and my dream of defying expectations and the odds took over. And just like Iron Man draws his energy from that Arc Reactor, I get a thump from my drive to prove myself every single day.”

bob chapek onstage
Credit: Disney

After that comparison to Iron Man, Chapek would go on to mistakenly refer to Walt Disney World as “The Happiest Place on Earth,” which of course is Disneyland’s tagline. Disney World goes by “The Most Magical Place on Earth”. Despite this mix-up, Chapek still served as a strong voice for the excited graduates. While this is far from the first blunder the CEO has experienced, it’s possibly the least offensive and/or important one of his career.

Have you ever made this same mix-up?

Let the expert team at Academy Travel help you plan your next magical vacation to Disneyland Resort, including Disneyland Park, Disney California Adventure, and the Downtown Disney District. Or what about Walt Disney World Resort’s four theme parks — Magic Kingdom, EPCOT, Disney’s Animal Kingdom, and Disney’s Hollywood Studios — and the Disney Springs shopping and dining district!

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