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April 20, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

Disney Studios chief Rich Ross has been ousted following the failure of John Carter, regarded as the costliest flop in Hollywood history. The studio plans to take a $200-million write off on the picture. Although not referring directly to the damage that occurred on his watch, Ross did acknowledge in his letter of resignation, “I no longer believe the Chairman role is the right professional fit for me.” Most trade reports suggested that Disney chief Robert Iger and other company executives had shared that conclusion and had asked him to step down after just 2 1/2 years at the helm. On her blog, Nikki Finke commented, “Make no mistake about it: Ross did not simply decide to step down: he was fired.” In its report, the Los Angeles Times noted that when he was appointed Disney Studios chief after a successful run leading the Disney Channel, “Many inside and outside Disney were skeptical at the time that a TV executive with limited film experience could transition successfully to running a large movie studio.” New York Times observed that Ross’s ouster “ends a two-and-a-half-year tenure that was more notable for continued misses than hits.” Ross’s letter of resignation did not contain the usual remarks about staying on in order to complete an orderly transition. Indeed, there was no immediate indication from Disney about who would replace him even temporarily.