George Lucas and Bob Iger

Star Wars Creator George Lucas Back Bob Iger’s Leadership and Disney Board in Ongoing Proxy Fight

Star Wars creator George Lucas has joined the fray in the ongoing proxy fight that The Walt Disney Company is currently embroiled in. Lucas strongly voiced his support for the leadership of Bob Iger for The Walt Disney Company and stated that he also backed the board. He didn’t just do this with his words though, as a voting shareholder he also voted for the Disney nominated board.

“Creating magic is not for amateurs,” Lucas said in a statement. “When I sold Lucasfilm just over a decade ago, I was delighted to become a Disney shareholder because of my longtime admiration for its iconic brand and Bob Iger’s leadership.”

Lucas went on saying, “When Bob recently returned to the company during a difficult time, I was relieved. No one knows Disney better. I remain a significant shareholder because I have full faith and confidence in the power of Disney and Bob’s track record of driving long-term value. I have voted all of my shares for Disney’s 12 directors and urge other shareholders to do the same.”

The Walt Disney Company purchased Lucasfilm from George Lucas in 2012 for $4 billion. Part of the deal saw Lucas receiving 37.1 million Disney shares. He is Disney’s largest individual shareholder.

The proxy fight will be determined on April 3, 2024 when Disney’s annual shareholder meeting is held. It will be virtual this year. This is when the future for either Disney’s board or Nelson Peltz’s initiatives will be determined. If Peltz and his Trian Group are successful, Nelson Peltz and former Disney executive Jay Rasulo would join the board. Blackwells Capital is also pushing its own nominations for the board as well. However, that initiative doesn’t seem to be getting as much public traction. The fight between Disney and Trian Group has gotten more acrimonious in recent weeks. Initially the dispute was rather cordial. As the annual meeting draws closer, the positions have grown stronger and more direct. It is possible that Lucas added to Disney’s position by saying that “creating magic is not for amateurs.” Peltz has admitted that he has no media experience.

George Lucas isn’t the only supporter that Disney has received lately. Independent proxy voting advisory firm Glass Lewis advised Disney shareholders to vote for Disney’s 12 nominees for its board. The grandchildren of both Walt and Roy O. Disney have spoken in support of Bob Iger and the Board of Directors. The CEO of JPMorgan Chase, Jamie Dimon, also backed Bob Iger and the board. Nelson Peltz has not seen the same level of public support at this point. However, there is still time.

What do you think of George Lucas supporting Bob Iger and the Disney board? Do you think it is the right move? Do you think it will have an effect? How do you think this proxy fight will play out? Share your thoughts and opinions in the comments below.