Disney CEO Steven P. Jobs?

“At News Corp., some people already are envisioning the jobs they might snag at Walt Disney Co. should their boss, Peter Chernin, wind up succeeding Michael Eisner,” Sallie Hofmeister reports for The Los Angeles Times. “They’re sheepish, but they can’t resist. ‘I have to admit,’ said one person who works for Chernin, the media’s conglomerate’s chief operating officer, ‘I’ve thought about it.’ Chernin is widely viewed by people in the industry, and by investors and headhunters, as the most logical candidate for Eisner’s job, which hangs in the balance this week.”

Hofmeister reports that Apple and Pixar CEO Steve Jobs is considered one of the potential Eisner replacements:

Wall Street has speculated for some time that the co-founder of Apple Computer Inc. could sell his vaunted Pixar Animation Studios to Disney and end up succeeding Eisner as CEO. Such talk intensified when Pixar failed in January to renew a lucrative alliance with Disney that has led to blockbusters such as “Toy Story” and “Finding Nemo.”

On the other hand, Pixar’s success doesn’t mean Jobs is ready to run an entertainment giant seven times its size. “He’s got the vision thing and leadership skills, but it’s a big leap,” said a leading recruiter.

Full article here.

24 Comments

  1. Call in Bill Gates, Perfect for Disney. In a few months he’ll release a new XP with Mickey Inside technology and of course, it’ll be just as bad as most of his product.
    Disney should then go to the shelf of history and quite frankly, it’ll be about time.
    Don’t touch Jobs, he has much better things to do than running Mickey’s corporate.

  2. slightly off the current thread, but:
    I wouldn’t underestimate how valuable Disney is to Pixar. Disney’s media holdings (ESPN, ABC, A&E, Miramax to name just a few) give Pixar the kind of exposure that other smaller studios can only dream about. And Disney’s reputation for producing nice, safe, “kid friendly” entertainment is something probably no other distributor can offer.

  3. You may have a point there but Pixar is not an unknown picture company now. People in the movie business now knows about them so exposure from Disney is not as big a factor as it was several years ago.

    As to Steve Jobs taking the role of CEO of Disney… I don’t see it happening. Although, if Eisner gets the boot, I’m wondering if his successor would reopen negotiation with Pixar.

  4. I can’t see Steve wanting to run Disney. It’s arguable that in this day and age, Pixar is far more important than Disney, and at the end of the day, they’re both just entertainment companies. Apple is a company that has changed the world on numerous levels. It’s been an active participant in shaping many aspects of the world as we know it. I think he’d be hard pressed to find another company that is as thrilling and important as Apple. I’ve always thought of Pixar as two things to him: a great investment, and a new hobby. Aside from negotiations with Disney, et al, I think he pretty much stays out of things at Pixar. That’s the only way he could manage to be CEO of two huge companies anyway.

  5. “Pixar did ALL the work and Disney got 50% for distributing”

    When was the last time someone awarded an Oscar for distributing? Pixar is the creator here.

  6. Apple is Steve’s baby. Pixar is too, I think. They both are very artsy/techy, which is what floats Steve’s boat.

    Steve might like to transform Disney into an artsy/techy company, but he’d probably fail. They’d have to give him a lot of power to make such sweeping changes, and I don’t think they would. Steve would be caught up in politics, and I’ll bet he would hate it.

    I doubt he would seriously consider it.

  7. I can see Steve Jobs running Disney. An ipod selling in the Disney store in Princes Pink my daughter would love it.
    The real question is would Steve want this job

  8. Steve might have plenty of power to run Disney. Eisner seems to have had all the power up till now. Disney, however might not be too keen to give anyone that much power again.

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