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OUTSTAYED HIS WELCOME,
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This review is from: Disney War (Hardcover)
This book by former Page-One editor of The Wall Street Journal and Pulitzer Prize winner, James B Stewart takes a detailed look at the reign of Michael Eisner at the top of the pile at The Walt Disney Co, from his joining in 1984 through to his being eased out in 2004.
Despite his arrogance and almost total insensitivity which intensified as the years passed, Michael Eisner for the first part of his stewardship must be given full credit for turning a faltering animation and amusement park company into one of the world's most sucessful suppliers of home entertainment. With the invaluable help of his number two and proverbial 'sweeper-up of the Eisner tsunami of hyper-activity, President Frank Wells, he transformed a sleeping 'seen-better-days' entertainment once-goliath into a vibrant, inovative, cutting edge, commercially sucessful outfit.
However, after the untimely death of Frank Wells in 1994, it all deteriorated with Eisner proceeding to turn himself into the 'villain' of the piece (worthy of one of his animated nasty characters) displaying an unedifying serving of megalomanic and insidious management style which alienated just about every talented senior executive, and important corporate partners. Among the many who experienced Eisner's arrogant and disengenuous modus operandi were Michael Ovitz, Jeffrey Katzenberg. Roy Disney (who he kicked off the board), Harvey Weinstein, and last but not least Steve Jobs, boss of Pixar, the massively sucessful animation company, that was making lots of money and market penetration for Disney from joint ventures. Jobs got to the stage with Eisner that he totally mistrusted him and refused to deal with him further.
Eventually Eisner was brought down by the tactile Roy Disney and his friend and former Disney Board member Stanley Gold, who engineered a campaign to unseat Eisner from initially the position of CEO but a complete severance from the company in short order.
This is a masterful work of investigative journalism, which is highly informative, interesting, and a great read. Highly recommended and a compulsive experience.