September 7, 1984 – Ron Miller Resigns as President and CEO of the Walt Disney Company
“All of this activity in the last six months is not purely attributable to Ron Miller. The directors had a voice in all of this.” – Harold Vogel, analyst with Merrill Lynch, Inc.
On September 7, 1984, after mounting pressure from the board of directors and a dismal series of events for the company, Ron W. Miller announced his resignation as President and CEO of the Walt Disney Company, which was accepted unanimously. The final six months of Miller’s command were bleak at best, with Saul P. Steinberg threatening to takeover the company; the company faced criticism in paying $325 million to Steinberg to keep the company intact. The company also faced problems in terms of the fare that they released; Miller had the idea to release more provocative fare, which was met with mixed criticism within the company. While the creation of Touchstone Films would prove to be a boon for the company, the earlier releases with this new provocative, innovative lens were financially disastrous. It would be shortly after this that Michael Eisner and Frank Wells would be named as CEO and President, respectfully, and the company would start seeing a turnaround in its success.