Alan Horn will retire as chief creative officer of Disney Studios Content and will continue to have success at the Walt Disney Company for nearly a decade. It was one that Horn saw stabilize film work after a turbulent period when Rich Ross took charge for three noisy years. Under Horn, Disney successfully merged Marvel’s film operations, relaunched the “Star Wars” film franchise after buying Lucasfilm in 2012, and maintained its dominance in the animation space.
Horn was expected to resign along with Disney chairman Bob Iger, a close associate who is leaving the company this December. Bob Chapek took over as Disney’s CEO in 2020. Eger wrote in his autobiography that the horn was his best fare. It was a decision that could have saddened Time Warner’s empire. The company pushed Horn to head Warner Bros., replacing Jeff Robinov, who left the studio in 2013 after a stormy tenure.
Orn will retire from the Horn Company by December 1. He led Walt Disney Studios as chairman from June 2012 to May 2019, when he was co-chairman and chief creative officer alongside co-chairman Alan Bergman. Since January 2021, Horn Bergman has served as chairman of Disney Studios Materials (formerly Walt Disney Studios).
“I’ve had the great privilege and joy of spending the last 50 years helping creative people around the world tell the story of movement, entertainment and connectivity – and a dream to have the opportunity to do so at Disney has come true, no less,” Horn said. I am deeply grateful to Bob Eger for the opportunity I gave him and to Alan Bergman for being an incredible partner throughout this adventure, as well as for Bob Chapek for his unwavering leadership during this unprecedented time. Saying goodbye to your favorite place is never easy, which is why I did it slowly, but under the leadership of Alan Bergman I am hopeful that the incredible studio team will show magic there for the next few years.
“Throughout his nearly five-decade-long career, Alan has had a profound impact on the entertainment industry and audiences around the world,” Eger said. “We are very fortunate to have Alan as our studio captain for almost a decade, during an unprecedented growth and exceptional storytelling, when we solidified his reputation as a true icon of the industry. Like many, I will always be grateful for his strong support, wise advice and lasting friendship. ”
“Working with Alan for so many years was a really special opportunity,” Chapek said. “He has led an incredibly talented studio team that makes one of the best in the industry, one of the most favorite and iconic films of our time, and he will forever be a cherished member of our Disney family.”
“Alan Horn is one of a kind, and we’re lucky that he chose to bring our talents to our studio,” Bergman said. “He was one of my most important mentors, and we’re both very proud that we’ve been able to lead this awesome team in our time together in the studio. I can’t thank him enough.”
There are no plans to replace the horn. Bergman, a respected and well-known executive and a Disney veteran, will continue to oversee the film department as it builds its streaming arsenal.
During Horn’s nine years at Disney, the studio has set numerous records at the box office, surpassing 7 7 billion worldwide in 2016 and 2018 and 11 11 billion in 2019, the only studio to reach this threshold. During his reign, Disney released more than 20 billion dollars, including the largest domestic release of all time (“Star Wars: The Force Awakens”) and the second largest global release of all time (“Avengers: Endgame”).
Prior to joining Disney, Horn held key leadership roles at prominent studios since he began his career in embassy communications entertainment in 1973. In 1987, he co-founded Castle Rock Entertainment, which he led until 1999, when he joined Warner Bros., where he served as president and chief operating officer until 2011. In these roles he has appeared in the “Batman Begins” and “Harry Potter” series, as well as “The Departed,” “Million Dollar Baby,” “The Shashank Redemption,” “When Harry Met Sally …,” and “Seinfeld.”