Bob Iger has spent much of his near decade at Disney wearing an additional corporate hat: CTO. The result? He has brought the coolest innovations from Lucasfilm, Pixar, Marvel, and ESPN into a single galaxy.
Even in a dress-down gray sweater, Bob Iger looks a bit mechanical. His mouth is almost geometrically straight, his face constructed of some cool alloy. His hair, of course, is perfect. That he can remain so mirthless even while wearing red-rimmed 3-D glasses and a fedora bedecked with tiny blinking lights is something of an achievement. Slowly he steps into the Dish, a windowless virtual reality chamber with curved walls at Disney’s Imagineering labs, a short drive from his office in Burbank, Calif. He is now in a forest—with cartoonish, lush green trees and brightly colored flowers, each comprising millions of floating pixels. All of a sudden, Iger stops and pretends to lean against one of the virtual trees on his path. A row of spectators off to the side—who include several members of his management team and some of the technologists who created the three-dimensional woodland—erupt in relieved laughter. Iger is having fun.
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