Disney chief steps down after ‘John Carter’ flop

Rich Ross leaves company after 15 years

The head of Disney’s film-making studio, Rich Ross, has resigned a month after the film John Carter became one of Hollywood’s greatest ever flops.

Ross, who was previously president of the Disney Channel and oversaw the creation of successful shows such as High School Musical and Hannah Montana, declared he was stepping down in an email to staff.

He wrote: “People need to be in the right jobs, in roles they are passionate about, doing work that leverages the full range of their abilities. I no longer believe the chairman role is the right professional fit for me.”

His decision to resign comes a month after the release of John Carter, a sci-fi film based on a series of books by Edgar Rice Burroughs, which was given the green light by Ross.

The film, starring Taylor Kitsch, was a major flop for the company. It cost more than $250million to make but the firm is expected to lose $200million, making it the company’s biggest ever failure. According to BBC News, Disney is not expected to appoint a new chairman immediately.

The company’s Chief Executive Bob Iger said: “For more than a decade, Rich Ross’ creative instincts, business acumen and personal integrity have driven results in key businesses for Disney. I appreciate his countless contributions throughout his entire career at Disney and expect he will have tremendous success in whatever he chooses to do next.”