The Walt Disney Company announced today that former CEO and current Disney chairman Bob Iger and fellow Disney executives including newly appointed CEO Bob Chapek would be taking crucial pay cuts amid the coronavirus outbreak.
Iger will forgo his his entire base salary, while Chapek will take a 50 percent pay cut to his salary, other top executives will also be taking a pay cut as per an email from Chapek sent out to employees. This news comes just a couple days after the company would keep its parks closed for the “foreseeable future.”
Bob Iger has been one of the top paid businessmen in the entertainment industry, earning over $47 million in 2019, and a whopping $65.6 million the year before that. As CEO Bob Chapek’s base salary is near $3 million, with an additional $23.5 million in bonuses and incentives. The cut will only apply to his base salary.
Also according to the email obtained by The Hollywood Reporter, effective April 5, all Vice Presidents will have their salaries cut 20 percent, Senior Vice Presidents by 25 percent, and Executive Vice Presidents or anyone in a higher position by 30 percent.
Additionally in the email, Chapek released a statement regarding the move:
“As we navigate through these uncharted waters, we’re asking much of you and, as always, you are rising to the challenge and we appreciate your support. Your dedication and resilience during this difficult time are truly inspiring and it gives me renewed confidence that will we come through this crisis even stronger than before, we have so many times in our company’s history.”
The Walt Disney Company outlined the details and specifics of the move with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
“Mr. Iger has agreed to forgo, through the last payroll period in the Company’s current fiscal year, receipt of all but that portion of his base salary necessary to fund, on an after-tax basis, his contributions to continue to participate in the Company’s health benefits plan,” states the filing. “He is also waiving his right to receive his car allowance payable during the same period the salary waiver is in effect.”
The document continues:
“Mr. Chapek will forego receipt of 50% and each of Mr. Braverman, Ms. McCarthy, Ms. Parker and Ms. Mucha will forego receipt of 30% of the base salary that would otherwise be payable under his or her employment agreement for as long as the Company determines to continue in effect salary reductions generally for its executives. The salary waivers will not modify other rights under the applicable employment agreements determined by reference to the officer’s base salary; such provisions will continue to be applied based on the stated base salary payable under the applicable agreement.”
Lastly, the document concludes:
“Additionally, except for the amount of compensation for paid time off, the reductions are not intended to reduce any Company employee benefit provided to such officers that is determined by reference to the base salary payable, except as may be required at law.”
The coronavirus has had a major impact on levels of the Walt Disney Company. The closure of the six theme parks and resorts remain, with the U.S. theme parks reportedly losing over $30 million a day in costs. Major film and tv series productions remain on hold, including The Little Mermaid, Shang-Chi, Shrunk, amongst others, with pre-production on some projects being done remotely including Peter Pan & Wendy, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs and multiple Disney+ projects.
Mulan, Black Widow, and Artemis Fowl have moved off their theatrical release dates, the company is reportedly sticking with theatrical releases for both Black Widow and Mulan, Up next for the company is Disney’s Studios Artemis Fowl (May), Pixar’s Soul (June 19) and Disney’s Jungle Cruise (July 24), both of those project remain on those dates for now.
Source: The Hollywood Reporter