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Disney CEO Bob Chapek praises Kathleen Kennedy during investor’s meeting

Chapek recently celebrated Lucasfilm chief Kathleen Kennedy

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Kathleen Kennedy poses for photographers upon arrival at the premiere for the film ‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’, in central London, Wednesday, Dec. 18, 2019. Disney CEO Bob Chapek recently celebrated Lucasfilm chief Kennedy.

Joel C Ryan, Invision via Associated Press

Disney CEO Bob Chapek had nothing but praise for Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy during Disney’s annual shareholder meeting on Tuesday.

  • Chapek said he is “absolutely thrilled” with Kennedy and happy to keep working with her, according to Deadline.
  • He said he is looking forward “to having Kathy directing the activities of the entire Lucasfilm operation for many years to come.”

Context

This matters because there had been rumors floating around that Disney and Lucasfilm planned to oust Kennedy from her role with the company. I was asked about the potential of Kennedy being fired on a recent episode of the “Echo Base Network” YouTube Show, as well as about the rumored internal “civil war” of Lucasfilm. Clearly, things look to be just fine for now.

Bigger picture

Kennedy has been something of a scapegoat for “Star Wars” fans who have been unhappy with the recent sequel trilogy. However, she told Yahoo back in 2019 — before the final film in the sequel trilogy, “The Rise of Skywalker,” dropped — that the feedback and criticism can help the company.

  • “You develop a little bit of an armor, but you learn from that. It’s kind of like having a continual focus group that’s out there telling you things, whether it’s what you want to hear or you don’t want to hear,” she said.

“The Force Awakens” and “Rise of Skywalker” director J.J. Abrams denounced some of the fan backlash at the time as well, as I wrote for the Deseret News.

  • “If you are someone who feels threatened by women and needs to lash out against them, you can probably find an enemy in ‘Star Wars,’” he said, as I wrote about. ”Anyone who wants to find a problem with anything can find the problem. The internet seems to be made for that.”