After weeks of searching for a replacement for ousted studio chairman Rich Ross, Disney CEO Robert Iger announced today that he was “going back to the studio’s roots” and hiring Walt Disney, who has been cryogenically frozen since his death in 1966.
Iger told Hollywood & Swine he made the decision to un-freeze the legendary company founder after failing to find a suitable candidate to run the studio.
Disney told an assembled crowd he was happy to be back and couldn’t wait to get back to work.
The thawing of Walt Disney was kept top secret for several days, as Iger and other Disney employees brought him up to speed on what the studio has been up to the last half century. “The one thing Walt couldn’t understand is why we made ‘John Carter’ and nobody could give him a good reason,” said one Disney employee who was present during Walt’s thawing and debriefing.
“I was John Lasseter, before John Lasseter,” Disney said, several hours after being thawed and debriefed on the company’s latest products. “I’m looking forward to re-making ‘Old Yeller’ in 3-D with Johnny Depp.”
But Insiders within the company say Iger’s plan has backfired. According to one employee, Walt has been already been organizing secret meetings with Disney board members behind Iger’s back. “Walt isn’t satisfied with just running the studio. He wants to run the whole company.”
Iger’s predecessor, Michael Eisner, warned him about bringing back Disney. “Before Iger took over my job, I told him whatever you do, no matter how bad things get with the studio, don’t bring back Walt.”