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Disney CEO and Chairman Robert Iger says he’s going to step down from his post in 2021.

Iger became Disney’s president and chief operating officer in 2000, and added the CEO title in 2005 after Michael Eisner departed. He became chairman in 2012.

“I’m expecting my contract to expire at the end of 2021,” Iger said Thursday during Disney’s investor day presentation. “I’d say this time I mean it but I’ve said that before . . . There’s a time for everything (and) 2021 will be time for me to finally step down.”

Iger had previously set a target departure date of 2018 but in March 2017, his contract was extended to July 2, 2019. That December it was extended again through the end of 2021.

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The 2021 extension was said to be contingent on the $71.3-billion acquisition of 21st Century Fox’s movie and TV studios and other assets including Fox’s 30% stake in Hulu. The transaction closed in March.

The board has “been engaged in a succession” process, Iger said. “They will be able to identify (someone) on a timely basis so there will be a smooth transition.”

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During his tenure at Disney, the entertainment giant has expanded its holdings to include Pixar in 2006, the Marvel comics brand in 2009 and Lucasfilm and its Star Wars franchise in 2012. 

Contributing: Bill Keveney


Disney released the full trailer for “The Lion King,” and it’s glorious.

Follow USA TODAY reporter Kelly Tyko on Twitter: @KellyTyko

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