Lou’s email inbox is often full to overflowing with questions from listeners. As such, he has enlisted the WDW Radio Blog writers to assist him in answering some of your questions.
“Lou, I’ve done a little research but haven’t been able to come up with anything. Maybe I’m just overlooking something. Are there any books by or about Michael Eisner relating to his time as CEO of Disney? I’m kinda fascinated with this period in Disney history. He’s a very polarizing figure. It seems people either love him or hate him. Anyway, amazing show. Thanks for the time and info. –Bobby”
Hey Bobby, let me start off by saying that this period of Disney history is fascinating! After Walt’s death in 1966, the company fell into a creative and financial slump. While some bemoan Michael Eisner’s reign — many for his assertion as the face of the company — there is no denying what he did to turn the company around. Of course, it wasn’t single handily his responsibility, as there were other major players involved.
Tangent over, now to answer your question, I recommend you check out Disney War by James B. Stewart. At a little over 600 pages, it’s a beefy read that chronicles Eisner’s time at the company leading up to the Save Disney campaign. If you are unaware there was a lot of bad blood in the company towards the end, mainly due to the exclusion of Roy E. Disney from company decisions, effectively ending the connection to Walt. Disney War covers Eisner’s life before Disney, and pretty much every major event he was involved in at the company.
Also on the Subject of Disney…
If you are interested in the Walt Disney Animation Studio at this time, check out the documentary Waking Sleeping Beauty. While it does not focus solely on Michael Eisner, it is during the same time period and gives great insight into the Disney animation renaissance of the early 90s.
If you haven’t already…
Be sure to check out WDW Radio Podcast Show #426 The Disney Decade for more in depth knowledge on Eisner’s time with the company.
Zack Kaplan may be situated far away from a Disney Park, but even in the Disney-less Massachusetts his passion burns strong. You can talk to him about Disney, video games, or philosophy over on Twitter @SteelDiver