"When You Wish Upon a Star", "Whistle While You Work", "The Happiest Place on Earth", these are lyrics indelibly linked to Disney, one of the most admired and best-known companies in the world. So when Roy Disney, chairman of Walt Disney Animation and nephew of founder Walt Disney, abruptly resigned in November 2003 and declared war on chairman and chief executive Michael Eisner, he sent shock waves through the entertainment industry, corporate boardrooms, theme parks, and living rooms around the world, everywhere that Disney does business and its products are cherished.
DisneyWar is the breathtaking, dramatic inside story of what drove America's best-known entertainment company to civil war, told by one of our most acclaimed writers and reporters.
Here, too, is the creative process that lies at the heart of Disney, from the making of The Lion King to Pirates of the Caribbean. Even as the executive suite has been engulfed in turmoil, Disney has worked, and sometimes clashed, with a glittering array of stars, directors, designers, artists, and producers, many of whom tell their stories here for the first time.
Stewart describes how Eisner lost his chairmanship and why he felt obliged to resign as CEO, effective 2006. No other book so thoroughly penetrates the secretive world of the corporate boardroom. DisneyWar is an enthralling tale of one of America's most powerful media and entertainment companies, the people who control it, and those trying to overthrow them.
DisneyWar is an epic achievement. In its sudden twists, its vivid, larger-than-life characters, and its thrilling climax, it tells a story that might itself have been the subject of a Disney animated classic, except that it's all true.
©2005 James B. Stewart; (P)2005 Blackstone Audiobooks
"Stewart has an astonishing story to tell. His notable accomplishment is that he tells it so well. The book is hypnotically absorbing." (Publishers Weekly)
50 year old woman, financial executive, interested in science, human behaviour and history in laymen terms & always enjoy good fiction.
Although the only book of this type I have ever read/listened to, I found it very interesting and enjoyed the business war presentation. If you think you might be interested, I recommend you give it a try.
This goes into great detail on the battles in the boardroom between the Disneys (and the creative folks in the company) and Eisner along with his battles with others. It is a great character study showing how he help the top spot for nearly 20 years by pitting people against each other and using a management style that can only be described as "megla-maniacal". Great detail into the split between Disney and Pixar showing how Eisner created it and never thought about the future farther than his next bonus package. Very detailed and might go on longer than some like but I thought this book just sped by.
This book is just awesome, the only reason it didn't get 5 stars is it didn't follow up on Eisner leaving Disney. As it ends he is still there, the book was released before Eisner departure. Still it's fascinating knowing the background of how he took Disney to being a major Media company.
The print version was much better as the audio edition was full of mistakes and bad edits. This was distracting to the flow of the information.
All is not Whistling While You Work in the former land of Disney. The story shows the cut throat and Machiavellian ways of many of the Disney board prominent. Although much has occurred since, it gives the reader a large piece of history of the Disney company from Ron Miller to Bob Iger (although the story precedes Iger's placement slightly). It gives insight into the Disney company's rapid growth and expansion into PG and R movies and the purchase of Family and ABC, and alludes to the corruption of power.
The narrator was fine, just the production was poor and could easily be redone to improve the book.
The rise and fall of Michael Eisner.
This is less about a war at Disney than it is a detailed (and exhaustively documented) history of Michael Eisner's time as the head of Disney, and the changes to the company and its culture that he oversaw. As an employee of the entertainment industry, I found this book very interesting, and the insider information, especially as much of it occurs in recent memory, is entertaining without being titillating. This is strictly an insider's view of the inner workings of Disney, however; what is missing is the context to put the events depicted in comparison to the workings of other entertainment companies. Fans of Disney may find this book interesting, since it explores what makes the Disney experience so distinct, and questions whether Eisner has improved that experience or not. The narration was good but not great; Lawlor's voice was more informal than I would have liked, and he seemed a bit rushed to get through the pages.
Compelling from the start till the end. Grabs you right away. A fascinating look at the behind the boardroom politics at one of the largest entertainment companies in the world....with egos to match.There were a few snafu's in the editing and performance, but they in no way took away from the story or pace.
Getting an insight in to the corporate culture.
The board meetings.
No. This was spread out during my commute to and from work.
This is good book, but it can get a little dry. You certainly start rooting for the bad guy to get his.
I loved the story and the the narrator did a great job, but the production was terrible- did no one proof this before it went out? There are numerous instances when a selection is repeated, sometimes with completely different inflection. I have never heard such a shoddy product from Audible before. It's clearly not the narrator's fault- unless, of course, he is supposed to proof this audio. As for the actual story, I have always been an admirer of Michael Eisner, but after this book, I wouldn't let him run a lemonade stand.
I would recommend this book to a Disney stock holder or a person thinking of purchasing stock. I think they need to know how crazy this good company was once run.
He isn't the best and I wouldn't listen to a book because he was reading it but it wouldn't stop me from purchasing.
An interesting story that not only delved into the history of the company, but intersected with other stories (like the Pixar elements that overlapped with the recent Steve Jobs biography). It was a captivating story that left me wanting more beyond the timeframe when the book was published in 2004.
The depiction of Michael Eisner and the believable delivery of the author when quoting him.
He sounded a lot like the real Michael Eisner and was really able to bring the hostility that was presented by the author.
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