Disney Deals Major Blow to Employees, Turns to AI

in Disney, Entertainment

Walt Disney Company CEO Bob Iger looking at Disney Brand Image with Castle and Logo

Credit: Inside the Magic

Previously hailed as a savior for The Walt Disney Company in the wake of unpopular CEO Bob Chapek’s departure from the company, Bob Iger has turned into his own version of a Disney villain.

Iger originally served as CEO of Disney from 2005 to 2020, replaced by Bob Chapek, who faced down a brand-new entertainment platform with Disney+, a pandemic that shuttered every Disney Park for months and halted production on dozens of projects, and a series of highly unpopular Park rules in the wake of a post-pandemic return to normalcy.

Bob Iger (left) and Bob Chapek (right) at 'Star Wars': Galaxy's Edge
Credit: Disney

Chapek was replaced by Iger in late 2022, in a shocking announcement that had Disney fans cheering for the company to be taken back by someone they knew and trusted to run the company. However, within the past year under Iger’s return, he’s faced a surprising drop in favor by fans after a series of disappointing movie releases, highly unfavorable Park announcements, and a shocking decision to remain as CEO until 2026, rather than a temporary placement.

As content previously available on Disney+ has been removed in the wake of the ongoing Hollywood strikes, Iger has quickly become enemy number one to those working in Hollywood and Disney fans alike. The Disney CEO has stated that he thinks the demands being asked by the writers and actors is “unrealistic,” even while he makes $27 million and enjoys owning several private yachts. He’s been called out by actors like Ron Perlman, Bryan Cranston, and Sean Gunn, even as he continues to make controversial decisions within the company.

sag-strike
Credit: Variety

It’s recently been revealed that Disney, along with other major studios like Netflix, Warner Bros., Sony, and Paramount, have chosen to directly ignore demands and requests to keep artificial intelligence out of the film industry. In fact, these studios are actively hiring for positions working with AI, in the wake of thousands of layoffs and content removal over the last several months.

In an even bigger blow to those who were laid off earlier this year, the positions are offering anywhere from $180,000 (for an R&D Imagineer at Disney) to over $900,000 per year (for an AI Product Manager at Netflix). Considering the amount of jobs that have been cut due to cost and streamed content that’s been lost due cost-cutting measures, it’s a blow to the workers. Especially considering the jobs are for AI positions as the strikes continue on the basis on not bringing the technology into film, it’s a disappointing move.

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