Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Batman And Disney: How Bob Iger Tried To Buy Warner Bros.

There's been a massive shake-up over at The Walt Disney Company. In a surprise move, Bob Iger has returned to lead the company as CEO, replacing his once-successor Bob Chapek. The stunning change of leadership came late last night and sent fans into a frenzy, with everyone hoping for a return to form for Disney.

Iger initially took over the role of CEO in 2005 and led the company until his retirement in early 2020. His tenure took the company to new heights. Although Disney saw massive success in the late 80s and early 90s with the release of numerous classic animated movies, Iger inherited a struggling company in the early 2000s. He spearheaded numerous acquisitions for the company, eventually resulting in a surge in profits. Disney purchased Pixar in 2006, Marvel in 2009, and Lucasfilm in 2012, all of which are now integral parts of the company. In 2018, Iger continued his streak of purchases when Disney acquired 21st Century Fox, further cementing the company's massive stake in the entertainment industry.

Following the news of Fox's acquisition, fans quickly expressed their excitement for what it meant on the Marvel side of things. With the transaction, the rights to many classic characters returned to Marvel, meaning that the X-Men were coming to the MCU — eventually. However, fans may not know that before this purchase, Iger tried to acquire another media giant: Warner Bros.

Disney tried to own both DC and Marvel

Long before the tumultuous merger of Warner Bros. and Discovery, Disney CEO Bob Iger reached out to the studio, inquiring about a potential merger between Time Warner and Disney. Iger called the then-CEO of Warner, Jeff Bewkes, to discuss a possible acquisition, but Bewkes informed him that something similar was already in the works. AT&T would shortly after purchase Time Warner for 85 billion dollars. The deal lasted until 2022 when the company gave ownership of Warner Bros. to Discovery.

The New York Times reported that Iger and Bewkes spoke in 2016. However, since the AT&T purchase was imminent, the discussion ended before it could even begin. Iger reportedly wished Warner well and moved on to his next plan, calling Rupert Murdoch, CEO of 21st Century Fox. Disney's acquisition of the studio was a massive move for the company, bringing in "X-Men," "Avatar," and "The Simpsons" under their umbrella. However, one can't help but imagine a world where Iger succeeded in his original plan to merge with Warner Bros.

Somewhere in the greater multiverse, there's a world where "Harry Potter," the DCU, and the MCU are all under the banner of The Walt Disney Company. In that world, maybe fans experienced another uber-successful "Harry Potter" franchise and a more coherent DC Cinematic Universe. Perhaps they've already gotten that DC and Marvel crossover film The Rock talked about.