The move cements Walden’s position as one of the content industry’s most powerful and respected CEOs. Inside Disney, Walden is raising her longtime counterpart John Landgrave of FX Networks. Walden’s jurisdiction includes ABC Entertainment, ABC News, Disney Branded Television, Disney Television Studios, Freeform, FX, Hulu Originals, National Geographic Content, and Onyx Collective. It will now report directly to Entanglement.
“Dana is a dynamic, collaborative leader and cultural force who, in just three years, has transformed our television business into a content force that consistently delivers the entertainment audiences crave.” “Her well-earned reputation for championing creative talent and developing programs that truly capture the cultural zeitgeist has resulted in success after success, from ABC’s ‘Abbott Elementary’ and Academy Award-winning Onyx Collective’s ‘Summer of Soul’, to the originals Hulu originals like “Only Murder in the Building,” “Dopesick,” “The Dropout,” “The Kardashians.” She and Peter have worked closely together for years to create the best programming in the industry, and I can think of no one better than Dana to lead Disney General Entertainment to even greater heights.”
Susan Arnold, Chairman of The Walt Disney Company, also issued a statement that wrote, “The strength of The Walt Disney Company’s business emerging from the pandemic is a testament to Bob’s leadership and vision for the company’s future. At this important time for business growth and transformation, we are committed to keeping Disney on The successful path you are on today, and Bob and his leadership team have the support and confidence of the Board of Directors.”
Rice, who served as head of general entertainment content, came to Disney by acquiring 21st Century Fox in 2019, as did Walden. His dismissal comes as a shock to Disney insiders and the entertainment community.
Sources close to the situation said Wednesday’s decision came from a tangle and caught nearly everyone in Burbank by surprise. Multiple sources say the decision was entirely business and strategy related and had nothing to do with any personal behavior on Rice’s part.
“It’s all business,” said a source familiar with the situation. Peter was surprised.
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