27 Facts About Michael Eisner


Michael Dammann Eisner was born on March 7,1942 and is an American businessman and former chairman and chief executive officer of The Walt Disney Company from September 1984 to September 2005.


Michael Eisner additionally broadened the company's media portfolio by leading the acquisitions of ABC, most of ESPN and The Muppets franchise.


Michael Eisner led major investments and expansion of the company's theme parks both domestically and globally, including the openings of Disney-MGM Studios in 1989, Euro Disney in 1992, Disney's Animal Kingdom in 1998, Disney's California Adventure Park and Tokyo DisneySea in 2001, Walt Disney Studios Park in 2002 and Hong Kong Disneyland in 2005.


Eisner's final years at Disney were tumultuous: a string of box-office bombs in the early 2000s, public feuds with former associates such as Jeffrey Katzenberg and Steve Jobs, and dissatisfaction with Eisner's management style culminated in the "Save Disney" campaign organized by Roy E Disney, during which Eisner rapidly lost the confidence of much of Disney's Board of Directors.


Michael Eisner was born to an affluent, secular Jewish family in Mount Kisco, New York.


Michael Eisner attended the Allen-Stevenson School kindergarten through ninth grade followed by The Lawrenceville School in 10th through his senior year and graduated from Denison University in 1964 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English.


Michael Eisner is a member of the Delta Upsilon fraternity and credits much of his accomplishments to his time at Keewaydin Canoe Camp for boys in Vermont.

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Michael Eisner moved up the ranks, eventually becoming a senior vice president in charge of programming and development.


Diller left Paramount on September 30,1984, and, as his protege, Michael Eisner expected to assume Diller's position as studio chief.


Michael Eisner brought in Jeffrey Katzenberg as Walt Disney Studios chairman.


Michael Eisner was not a performer by profession, and studio management did not believe he could do the hosting job.


Michael Eisner stubbornly persisted in the face of almost unanimous criticism.


Under Michael Eisner, Disney acquired many other media sources, including ABC, most of ESPN, Fox Family and The Muppets franchise.


Those completed included the Euro Disney Resort which was vastly over budget, and had low attendance and was acknowledged by Michael Eisner to be his "real financial disappointment", Disney-MGM Studios, Disney's California Adventure Park, Disney-MGM Studios Paris, and various film projects including a Who Framed Roger Rabbit franchise.


When Michael Eisner did not appoint Katzenberg to Wells' now available post, tensions arose between the two that led to Katzenberg's resignation.


At the time, Michael Eisner refused to pay Katzenberg his contractual bonus' despite Katzenberg's offer to accept $60 million as a settlement, much less than was actually owed.


Ovitz lasted only 14 months, partly due to outright hostility from Sandy Litvak and Steve Bollenbach and a lack of support by Michael Eisner, and left Disney in December 1996, via a "no fault termination" with a severance package of $38 million in cash, and 3 million stock options worth roughly $100 million, at the time of Ovitz's departure.


On March 13,2005, Michael Eisner announced that he would step down as CEO one year before his contract expired, and handed off day-to-day duties to Bob Iger, who had been serving as Disney's President and Chief Operating Officer and had just been selected by the directors as the CEO-designate.


Michael Eisner did not initially promote Iger as a successor until after the board put pressure on Michael Eisner to resign.


Michael Eisner controlled and manipulated the board by keeping members isolated, preferring to communicate one-on-one; selectively doling out information, access and benefits.


Michael Eisner has apologized to the Chinese Communist Party for Disney distributing the 1997 film Kundun, a biopic about the early life of Tenzin Gyatso, the 14th Dalai Lama, which offended Communist Chinese sensitivities.


On October 7,2005, Michael Eisner was a guest host for the Charlie Rose talk show.


Michael Eisner's guests were John Travolta and his ex-boss, Barry Diller.


In October 2007, Michael Eisner, through his Tornante Company investment firm, partnered with Madison Dearborn Partners in the acquisition of Topps Company, the bubble-gum and collectibles firm.


In 2009, Michael Eisner used his own money to produce a claymation show called Glenn Martin, DDS.

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Michael Eisner was inducted into the Television Academy Hall of Fame in 2012.


In March 2017, came the revelation that Michael Eisner was interested in a takeover of Portsmouth FC, a football club in the south of England that had fallen on hard times after years of poor ownership, before being taken over by its fans.