Bob Iger sang for his supper at the end of 2019 — his final full year in his first tenure as the CEO of the Walt Disney Company. The exec’s self-penned performance evaluation was disclosed Tuesday as one of many significant documents in a class action lawsuit that alleges that the company discriminates against female employees and pays them less than their male peers.
In the piece, Iger, who named Bob Chapek as his successor in the following months, touts Disney’s massive year, which he writes saw the “historical launch” of Disney+, the finalized acquisition of 20th Century Fox and a record-setting $11.9 billion box office year, led by titles like Marvel saga capper “Avengers: Endgame,” the CG-rendered “The Lion King” and animated sequel “Frozen II.”
Iger’s self-penned evaluation was given to a “committee” to calculate an appropriate compensation recommendation, per another document unsealed in the lawsuit. Disney’s board than reviewed the committee’s opinion. Iger saw a $47.5 million pay day at the start of 2020 — down 28% from his pay package a year prior. After 2018, Iger faced some criticism over concerns of excessive pay after receiving a windfall of $65.6 million — including a one-time $35.3 million in stock awards.
As Iger began to make preparations to exit the company in 2019, industry consensus was that the exec was leaving on top. Less than one year after leaving his newly created role of executive chairman in 2021 and completely handing the reins to Chapek, his successor was unseated by the company’s board to replace him with his predecessor. Iger’s tenure since has largely been a matter of combatting a fallen stock price, stalled growth in streaming and theatrical disappointments.
In the self-evaluation, Iger writes how “creative engines across our company focused on developing compelling and original content for Disney+” and touted how 171 projects were in the works for the streamer. It’s a sharp contrast from now, when Iger has signaled that Disney is aiming to make less film and TV for Disney+ as the company looks to cut costs.
Other bullet points include spotlighting new attractions across Disney’s parks and resorts and the company’s recognition as one of “America’s most trustworthy public companies” and being named “the #1 most innovative company” in media by Fast Company.
The Hollywood Reporter was first to report Iger’s self-evaluation being disclosed.