Support for LAist comes from
Made of L.A.
Stay Connected

Share This

Arts and Entertainment

Disney Begins To Fulfill Pledge To Axe 7,000 Workers, Many Local Jobs Likely Lost

A fair-skinned man wearing a dark suit, white shirt and tie stands in front of a wall with "Beauty and the Beast" inscribed on it
Disney CEO Bob Iger. He announced plans Monday to begin laying off 7,000 workers.
(Mike Coppola
Getty Images)
Our June member drive is live: protect this resource!
Right now, we need your help during our short June member drive to keep the local news you read here every day going. This has been a challenging year, but with your help, we can get one step closer to closing our budget gap. Today, put a dollar value on the trustworthy reporting you rely on all year long. We can't hold those in power accountable and uplift voices from the community without your partnership.

Making good on an earlier Wall Street promise to slash $5.5 billion in costs, Disney CEO Bob Iger said the media giant would begin sacking some 7,000 employees this week.

The job cuts will come in several waves over the next few months, following Iger’s February announcement to trim the workforce when Disney reported earnings.

“I want to acknowledge that there will no doubt be challenges ahead as we continue building the structures and functions that will enable us to be successful moving forward,” Iger wrote in an email sent to Disney staff on Monday.

For those employees who no longer have jobs, Iger said, “Please know that our HR partners and leaders are committed to creating a supportive and smooth process every step of the way.”

Support for LAist comes from

Disney has about 220,000 workers around the world, more than three-fourths of whom are full-time. Few of the cuts are expected to come from the company’s theme parks unit, which has generated strong revenues in the wake of the pandemic.

Instead, the layoffs likely will touch every Disney business unit, which include ESPN and the Burbank-based Disney Entertainment — the company’s film, television and streaming divisions. One local unit, Disney’s Creative Acquisitions Department, reportedly will be disbanded, and senior executives at Hulu, Disney TV Studios and Freeform have been let go, according to several media reports.

Iger returned to run Disney after his successor, Bob Chapek, was fired last year less than three years into the job. Largely under Chapek’s watch, Disney has lost nearly $10 billion on its streaming platforms since Disney Plus was launched in late 2019.

Do the stories that Hollywood tells about itself really reflect what's going on?

“This week, we begin notifying employees whose positions are impacted by the company’s workforce reductions,” Iger wrote in his staff email. “Leaders will be communicating the news directly to the first group of impacted employees over the next four days.

"A second, larger round of notifications will happen in April with several thousand more staff reductions, and we expect to commence the final round of notifications before the beginning of the summer to reach our 7,000-job target," Iger wrote.

Iger’s compensation could hit about $27 million this year, or some $10,000 every work day.

What questions do you have about film, TV, music, or arts and entertainment?
John Horn, entertainment reporter and host of our weekly podcast Retake, explores whether the stories that Hollywood tells about itself really reflect what's going on?

Most Read