Written by Robert Niles
Published: September 13, 2004 at 10:35 AM
Eisner Successor Speculation Swirls at Disney
Hollywood Reporter -- Sept. 13
Eisner Sets Exit, but What's the Strategy?
Los Angeles Times -- Sept. 13
At Disney, Mending Fences or Moving On?
New York Times -- Sept. 13
Don't Blame Eisner
Theme Park Insider -- Sept. 12
The weekend gave the ink-stained pooh-bahs time to reflect on Disney CEO Michael Eisner's announced departure. The Motley Fool serves up the obvious -- before Frank Wells died, good. After Wells died, bad. The investment website offers that the company's got no place to go but up in 2005, however, presumably allowing Eisner to leave on a high note.
The Hollywood Reporter looks forward, not back, appropriate for a town with the historical sense of an amnesiac after a fifth apple martini. Who's gonna head the Mouse House? Iger? Karmazin? Jobs? Roy Disney? Bad karma points to the H.R. for mentioning Paul Pressler, even if it does bury him in the final graf, where the H.R. sticks the names of people who really don't have anything to do with the story but have to be included for no other reason than to prevent hostile phone calls from flacks of the snubbed.
The L.A. Times buries the lead, devoting the top grafs to unsourced speculation about how Eisner might change now that he's announced he will leave. Yet another anonymous source answers the question in the 12th graf: "Personality doesn't change." Duh. The more interesting news? Overtures may be forthcoming to Pixar, in an attempt to get the animation companty to re-up with a Eisner-less Disney.
The N.Y. Times leads with that issue in its story, but takes a far less optimistic view toward a reunion. But the NYT suggests that Eisner's departure might make Harvey Weinstein's life a lot easier. Not that very people in Hollywood would welcome *that* thought.
Finally, some contrarian bumpkin at some theme park website suggests that it is the Disney Dorks themselves (to borrow Kevin Baxter's oh-so-affectionate term) that brought this management meltdown upon their beloved company by not practicing a little tough love and spending their money elsewhere when Disney trotted out so many crappy videos, movies, TV shows, books, clothes, kitchen gadgets and theme park rides in the late 1990s and early 2000s.
Oh wait, that was me.