In 2022, an activist investor supported by Marvel Entertainment’s billionaire boss targeted disney, saying that costs had to be cut. This Marvel leader, Isaac “Ike” Perlmutter, was also a Disney employee after Disney bought Marvel in 2009 for $4 billion, and was the visionary executive who established Marvel Studios as the future of Hollywood with the years 2008. Iron Mankicking off more than a decade of box office superhero dominance.
On Wednesday, Disney laid off Perlmutter over the phone as part of cost-cutting measures, THE New York Times reported. Marvel Entertainment, which sells consumer products and operates independently from production company Marvel Studios, will be integrated into larger Disney units, the temperature said, citing unnamed sources. Perlmutter co-chairman Rob Steffens and chief counsel John Turitzin were also fired. Marvel Entertainment President Dan Buckley will remain and report to Marvel Studios Chief Kevin Feige.
Disney and Marvel Studios did not return immediately Fortunerequest for comment.
Perlmutter’s layoff comes days after Disney CEO Bob Iger announced the company would cut 7,000 employees amid financial difficulties and rising costs. Certainly, layoffs have multiplied in many sectors recently, but few of them have affected senior executives.
Perlmutter’s complicated relationship with Iger
Perlmutter, 80, has been with Marvel since the 1990s and the much larger Disney for more than a decade. He is also a major Disney shareholder, with a stake of almost 1%. worth $2.4 billion.
Perlmutter’s recent vocal support for activist investor Nelson Peltz, who had campaigned for a seat on the Disney board of directors, put Perlmutter in an awkward position. Peltz pressured Disney to cut costs, reorganize parts of the business, and create a CEO succession plan. Between August and November 2022, Perlmutter made six calls to Disney’s board and senior executives to press Peltz’s case, according to SEC Filings earlier this year.
For its part, Disney rejected Peltz’s push for a board seat. In January, Disney said the activist investor “does not have the skills and experience” to serve on its board and that it had not come up with any strategic ideas to help the company.
Last month, Peltz ended its proxy battle after Iger announced a cost-cutting plan, said Peltz’s investment management firm, Trian Partners. THE New York Times.
Even before the militant brawls, Iger had a complicated relationship with Perlmutter. When Iger was chief between 2005 and 2020, he often communicated with Perlmutter through his short-lived successor, Bob Chapek, due to the tension between them. the Financial Times reported in January, citing former employees.
Since Disney bought Marvel, Perlmutter’s responsibilities have steadily diminished – he had no real role in Marvel’s film and television production business. He also had a reputation for frugality and a history of opposing projects involving women or people of color as leaders, landing him in the crosshairs with Marvel Studios boss Feige. In 2015, Iger’s reshuffle of Marvel Studios under Walt Disney Studios, further diminished Perlmutter’s control on creative decisions and budgets in the cinema segment.