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Download DisneyWar Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample DisneyWar Audiobook, by James B. Stewart Click for printable size audiobook cover
4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 4.00 (1,116 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: James B. Stewart Narrator: Patrick Lawlor, Patrick Laylor Publisher: Simon & Schuster Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: October 2017 ISBN: 9781508251613
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The dramatic inside story of the downfall of Michael Eisner—Disney Chairman and CEO—and the scandals that drove America’s best-known entertainment company to civil war.

“When You Wish Upon a Star,” “Whistle While You Work,” “The Happiest Place on Earth”—these are lyrics indelibly linked to Disney, one of the most admired and best-known companies in the world. So when Roy Disney, chairman of Walt Disney Animation and nephew of founder Walt Disney, abruptly resigned in November 2003 and declared war on chairman and chief executive Michael Eisner, he sent shock waves through the entertainment industry, corporate boardrooms, theme parks, and living rooms around the world—everywhere Disney does business and its products are cherished.

Drawing on unprecedented access to both Eisner and Roy Disney, current and former Disney executives and board members, as well as thousands of pages of never-before-seen letters, memos, transcripts, and other documents, James B. Stewart gets to the bottom of mysteries that have enveloped Disney for years: What really caused the rupture with studio chairman Jeffrey Katzenberg, a man who once regarded Eisner as a father but who became his fiercest rival? How could Eisner have so misjudged Michael Ovitz, a man who was not only “the most powerful man in Hollywood” but also his friend, whom he appointed as Disney president and immediately wanted to fire? What caused the break between Eisner and Pixar chairman Steve Jobs, and why did Pixar abruptly abandon its partnership with Disney? Why did Eisner so mistrust Roy Disney that he assigned Disney company executives to spy on him? How did Eisner control the Disney board for so long, and what really happened in the fateful board meeting in September 2004, when Eisner played his last cards?

DisneyWar is an enthralling tale of one of America’s most powerful media and entertainment companies, the people who control it, and those trying to overthrow them. It tells a story that—in its sudden twists, vivid, larger-than-life characters, and thrilling climax—might itself have been the subject of a Disney classic—except that it’s all true. Download and start listening now!

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Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Ingrid | 2/17/2014

    " This was definitely a surprise find for me. I picked this up randomly at an airport and was stunned. This is the most soap opera-like business book I've ever read. Actually could not put it down, which is quite rare for a non-fiction. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Tj | 2/11/2014

    " very solid read--tells the story of the evolution of the Walt Disney company as a brand, through its evolution over hte past 50 or so years, particularly highlighting the time in which I was a child, and the evolution which directed the entertainment that many children of my generation grew up with. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Andy | 2/6/2014

    " Fascinating book. Michael Eisner had this great term he called "the elastic yes" and I've quoted that several times. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kristina | 1/24/2014

    " Gossipy look at the inner workings of the Disney corporation - very fun read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Evan Chen | 1/20/2014

    " Very well written and captivating book about the innerworkings of the Disney corporation during the Eisner era. You get a glimpse of what the corporate world is all about and how even in what the people see as the "happiest company in the world" there is a lot of inner turmoil and corporate politics. GREAT READ! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 David!! | 1/15/2014

    " An enlightening read, but left out so many details that I wanted to know about. Eisner created 3 new theme parks in the U.S. and negotiated Jim Henson to death, but there was no mention of either of these things. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Lawrence | 1/11/2014

    " Great reporting about how Hollywood really works. I grew up 60 miles from Orlando so the Disney angle was an added bonus. If you want to know why ESPN is terrible, blame the Disney/ABC executives who come across as being ass-clowns. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Greg | 1/10/2014

    " This is a great book about the rise of Disney over the last 25 years. Some may view it as a hatchet job on Eisner but I believe it is a fair book to all of the parties. I would like to read a Disney Wars II if the author ever decides to tackle the subject again. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Joseph Sales | 12/12/2013

    " Can people be more venal. The characters are Shakespearean no doubt in their appetites, general gestalt. Fascinating. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jchung7 | 12/4/2013

    " One of the best historical business books I've read. Stewart's portrayal of Eisner's talent and ego is mesmerizing. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Blake | 11/14/2013

    " AWESOME. I am biased as I work for the MOUSE. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Mike E | 11/14/2013

    " great book about the controversy surrounding the growth of Disney empire, Michael Esiener, issues with Roy O and more. Good read for any Disney fan. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Keith | 10/10/2013

    " Long, far too long. Disjointed. Needs an editor. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Alex | 9/16/2013

    " Michael may be a vaguely boring character but Stewart can make anything interesting. This book unveils the insanity in corporate America. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Christine Doery | 5/23/2013

    " I found it to be an intriguing in-depth look at the business aspects of the Walt Disney Company. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Grace Kao | 4/15/2013

    " Extremely enjoyable non-fiction that gives a good glimpse of the business side of Disney. Stewart made reading this intimidatingly thick tome do-able. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 David Lafferty | 12/4/2012

    " Great dirt on the mess that was the transition of leadership at Disney post-Eisner. Mickey must be rolling in his grave (is he dead?) "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Barry | 10/20/2012

    " very good business book. shows how ugly things can get. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Twodogsrunningsouth | 4/23/2012

    " Fascinating book regarding the reign of Eisner at Disney. The pure amount of money that flows in and out of that place is astonishing. Great read! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Andrew R | 1/9/2012

    " An incredible piece of journalism. Stewart writes in the preface that after writing books on Wall Street and Washington DC, Hollywood seemed like the next center of power and influence worth exploring. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 bryan | 12/1/2011

    " An incredible story, yes, but filled with too much detail. Did it REALLY have to be 500+ pages? Highly recommended for anyone interested in Disney or Hollywood history. Just feel free to skim. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Rick Hammond | 6/25/2011

    " I did not read this, but I did listen to the audio book, it was Okey but not great. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Eric | 3/6/2011

    " Michael Eisner is a duplicitous, egotistical creative man with no room for remorse. While he is a quality leader, he sabotages any plan for succession. This might not be new information to anyone, but it's nice to see the details in pretty well written book. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Stephen | 2/1/2011

    " Material is a bit dated, but a perfect insider story of how corporations as large and as important as Disney works and fails. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Alex | 1/13/2011

    " Michael may be a vaguely boring character but Stewart can make anything interesting. This book unveils the insanity in corporate America. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Michael | 11/27/2010

    " Very enjoyable read of the tumultuous reign of Michael Eisner as the CEO of Disney. Especially entertaining if you are a fan of Disney, boardroom turmoil, and the behind-the-scenes process of the running of a movie/television/media/entertainment empire. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Barry | 11/26/2010

    " very good business book. shows how ugly things can get. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Simon | 4/14/2010

    " Great insights into Disney business at the start of their digital animation era. You can easily relate to the 'stories' with the familiar backdrop eg movies, characters. Find out the decisions they made, for business or personal reasons "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Emily | 12/8/2009

    " What a day to finish this book! Roy Disney died today.

    Book was very interesting, well written and full of facts about the 80s and 90s Disney company. It's a rather long read though, so you should be very interested in the topic before you start reading this one! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Betsy | 11/1/2009

    " An entertaining listen. Never fascinating but never boring either. If you don't think you would like a book like this, this is not the book to surpass those expectations. "

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About the Author

James B. Stewart is the author of Heart of a Soldier, the bestselling Blind Eye and Blood Sport, and the blockbuster Den of Thieves. A former Page-One editor atthe Wall Street Journal, he won a Pulitzer Prize in 1988 for his reporting on the stock market crash and insider trading. He is a regular contributor to SmartMoney and the New Yorker. He lives in New York.

About the Narrator

Patrick Lawlor, an award-winning narrator, is also an accomplished stage actor, director, and combat choreographer. He has worked extensively off Broadway and has been an actor and stuntman in both film and television. He has been an Audie Award finalist multiple times and has garnered several AudioFile Earphones Awards, a Publishers Weekly Listen-Up Award, and many starred audio reviews from Library Journal and Kirkus Reviews.