Disney CEO Bob Chapek Pulled from Destination D23 Appearance Out of Fear Disney Fans Would Boo Him

Tom Corless

Parks and Resorts Chairman Bob Chapek is Main Contender to Replace Bob Iger

Disney CEO Bob Chapek Pulled from Destination D23 Appearance Out of Fear Disney Fans Would Boo Him

Tom Corless

Parks and Resorts Chairman Bob Chapek is Main Contender to Replace Bob Iger

Disney CEO Bob Chapek Pulled from Destination D23 Appearance Out of Fear Disney Fans Would Boo Him

When the presentations for this weekend’s Destination D23 event at Walt Disney World were posted back in July, the event was set to kick-off with an in-person welcome from Disney CEO Bob Chapek. This welcome was quietly removed from all announcements in the weeks following, and is now nowhere to be seen on the schedule.

Since July, the CEO has been under scrutiny from a fair amount of people, from the Hollywood elite, to plain-old day guests at Disney theme parks around the world. Just days after the Destination D23 schedule went live, Scarlett Johansson filed lawsuit against the company. Disney announced Genie+ and Lightning Lane in August to the worst public scrutiny any parks announcement had ever met on the internet. In solidarity with Imagineers, many signed a petition to remove Chapek as CEO, even if the petition wasn’t very well put together.

It became most clear that Chapek could not appear in front of Disney fans after his brief meet and greet with guests on October 1st at the Magic Kingdom. While some asked the CEO for a quick pic, others heckled him from afar over budget cuts, mass layoffs, and the “nickel-and-diming” that have been a hallmark of his regime as either the head of the theme parks division or now the entire company. Once the heckling started, Chapek bolted from the scene to a backstage area. That being said, he’s never been one for public appearances or for actually greeting guests, often making brief on-stage appearances and then leaving as quickly as possible after a photo or video is taken.

The more knowledgeable the Disney fan, the more likely they are to disagree with Chapek’s decisions, which often go against long-standing beliefs of past executives in The Walt Disney Company. You’d be hard-pressed to find a room of more knowledgeable or die-hard fans than you will this weekend at Destination D23, an event attended by members of Disney’s official fan club. Chapek being booed as he walked on stage on Saturday wouldn’t be a good look for the CEO, so he simply won’t appear according to sources inside the company.

Saturday’s festivities will instead be lead off with some nondescript introduction, which after this piece may end up being pre-recorded by Chapek to save face. Either way, any and all announcements regarding the future on Saturday will be left to Josh D’Amaro, who will make his first keynote presentation to the public since taking the job.

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45 thoughts on “Disney CEO Bob Chapek Pulled from Destination D23 Appearance Out of Fear Disney Fans Would Boo Him”

  1. Coward. At least face the music when you trample all over something people have loved for decades. I hope they remember all their actions when times get bad and they need these loyal fans to fill the coffers. At the rate they are going there won’t be anyone left.

  2. It’s very wise to avoid putting Chapek in front of knowledgeable Disney Fans.
    But I’m not so sure Josh D’Amaro is all that beloved anymore.
    He’s most likely sitting on his hands to keep his job, but that doesn’t fly with a lot of us diehards.

    • D’Amaro is a good looking guy with charisma, that is the only reason he was beloved to begin with, imo. He is just as much a destroyer as Cheapskate.

      • Josh is a people person. I met him and he really helped me with an issue we had quickly and with a smile on his face.
        I will say that I LOATHE the Critter Store. It’s aweful. There is nothing Disney about this store. Sterile boring boring.

    • Agreed. I’m not sure it’s completely fair to blame it all on Chapek if – at the end of the day – D’Amaro is the head of the parks and is going along with all these bad decisions. After all, it was D’Amaro who said that paying for Lightning Lane is a “way to give guests more flexibility and options”, which says a lot about the mindset of this regime.

      • Are you serious?? What a dumb statement, you think Josh D’Amaro has a choice in the matter? You think he actually makes his own decisions?? hahaha. Just a quick lesson in executive mgmt, everything they say, see or do is from a preapproved script by the regime in charge which is overseen by Bob Chapek. Nothing they do, say or act is off the cuff, this should be apparent by the forced and often disigenuous sense of excitement you see when Josh D’Amaro talks. He doesn’t look like he believes what he is saying, it almost gives you a douche-chills to watch. Get a clue

  3. Based on the most recent shareholder update, things are looking pretty good and guests are super happy, especially with Genie and Genie+. Why would super happy fans boo the man? That makes no sense at all.

    He should show up so the super happy fans can give him the cheers he deserves. He’s earned it.

  4. So in other words we know there is a problem and dislike for Bob and everything that’s happened lately but rather than address it and correct it let’s just hide it……great job as always

  5. This would have been a golden opportunity for Bob Iger to give his farewell address in front of a crowd that, for the most part, likes him & what he’s done for the Parks & Company. He retires at the end of the year. (This isn’t a suggestion, just stating a thought out loud among friends.)

  6. That dude needs to ask Santa for a backbone for Christmas. This isn’t going away anytime soon and he needs to suck it up or get out of the way.

  7. so chepek is self aware enough to know people dislike him but not enough to do something about it

    • Yep, he’s a salesman and folks are are falling for it, but not us.

      He thought he could pull a fast one at D23 by telling the audience he had “so many exciting things to share in only 55 minutes!” Umm yeah, nothing but recaps of existing projects or the bringing back of things taken away… big deal.

      And how do you sell this garbage? You tell your audience that they are all “brand ambassadors” so they feel tickled to spread the propaganda. He must think we’re all just a bunch of idiots to fall for all this.

      This is the same guy who said a while back that Lightning Lane was such an exciting addition because we get to pay for more options! I think most of us can see through it, but it’s still insulting.

  8. For someone who created and runs a WDW app you are always so negative about the parks, food, drinks, policies and pretty much everything Disney so why don’t you use your useless media “talents” and start a new app on things you actually like instead of just slashing Disney all the time?

    • We do have an app, but I’m very confused by this. Fighting for quality is important, and if every other site is being fake to keep media credentials, we have an obligation to be honest with the public and try to help them spend their money as best they can. These “negative” reviews often push people in the direction go better options, better hotels, better restaurants, all still owned by Disney.

  9. Maybe they are replacing him with Kylo Ren as it’s about time they introduce more IPs into the Disney product.

  10. We need to cancel our Disney+ subscriptions until Disney addresses the trams; the stupid park reservation situation; the DLR PeopleMover track ugliness and EPCOT’s JIA attraction. If we unsubscribe from Disney+ that will get Chapek and the Board’s attention more than anything.

  11. He certainly would be booed if he turned up at a Disney fan even at Walt Disney World, they don’t seem to want to except that as reality. They believe they can make their shareholder happy coming out of the pandemic by price gouging WDW during the 50th and the fans will “just go along with it”? …not so much

  12. At least charge extra to boo bob? Thats the name of the game isnt it? I mean id pay an extra $5 to throw rancid dole whip at him?

  13. I think that now Disney is becoming OPENLY hostile towards these news outlets, their true nature is becoming much more pronounced. It’s not an attitude of silence and indifference anymore; it’s an attitude of HATRED. Honest to god HATRED. I think the best song to describe Disney under Chapek would be this song by Phil Collins called ‘I Don’t Care Anymore’: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zZ3GA6dazTA

  14. This is the first time I’ve ever read a WDWNT article. I have stayed away from these sites just because I thought all the people here would bend over backwards to throw money at a company that doesn’t reflect the values of Walt anymore.
    After reading the comments below, I see I am not alone in calling out the new Disney leadership. The recent actions are Disney to me. Chapeck needs to ask himself, WWWD?

  15. He is ruining the Disney that we all have loved for so many years. Greedy, evil man who apparently never visited the parks before his rampage on tradition and affordable fun for average families. Not all families are elitists. If they don’t change their image back to family soon he will have run Disney into the ground with no one at the parks and millions in upgrades that nobody can afford to see. Shameful!

  16. This reminds me of the good old bad days after Frank Wells died and Eisner went off the rails. It took a stockholder revolt lead by Roy E. Disney to oust him.

    We don’t have a Roy E. anymore or any Disney’s on the board. The Disney company simply has no soul.

  17. Bob Paycheck is the epitome of corporate greed. He absolutely disgusts me. He has literally started a war on the middle class. He knows he is wrong, and is such a coward. If he is so great, why not try to defend his new policies? He knows there is no defense for his cruelty and greed. In the past few months, he has easily tacked on extra thousands of dollars for a family of four to already exorbitant vacation costs. Then a lot of the perks have been reduced or taken away. If people would stop letting him win, and giving him money, they would have no choice but to make changes. I have canceled Disney+, and refuse to step foot in Disney World again.

  18. is it just me or does it seem that Disney is being cheap across the board? (Recent food cuts and comments come to mind ) While the goal of any CEO is to maximize shareholder value, they’re totally mismanaging the Disney brand for short term gain, if any.

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