Fact Check

Did Gina Carano Replace Chip Gaines as Head of Disney Imagineering?

Carano is a former cast member of "The Mandalorian" on Disney Plus.

Published April 17, 2021

ANAHEIM, CALIFORNIA - AUGUST 23: Gina Carano of 'The Mandalorian' took part today in the Disney+ Showcase at Disney’s D23 EXPO 2019 in Anaheim, Calif.  'The Mandalorian' will stream exclusively on Disney+, which launches November 12. (Photo by Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images for Disney) (Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images for Disney)
Image Via Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images for Disney
Gina Carano replaced Chip Gaines as head of Walt Disney Imagineering.

On March 6, 2021, Uncle Walt’s Insider published an article positing that former "The Mandalorian" actress Gina Carano was replacing HGTV star Chip Gaines as the head of Walt Disney Imagineering:

BURBANK, CA — Chip Gaines lasted less than a week as head of Walt Disney Imagineering.

Disney (the company) spokesperson Jun Disney (no relation) told Uncle Walt's Insider, "Officially, Chip is moving on to devote more time with his family."

"Off the record, though," Disney (no relation) continued, "Chip was less interested in coming up with new attractions, and more into completely gutting the Imagineering offices, 'to get them ready to flip.'" [Note to self: look up the meaning of "off the record" before publication.]

A surprising choice

Gaines’ replacement, actress and former MMA fighter Gina Carano, is a surprising choice. (It says so right above this paragraph.)

This item was not a factual recounting of real-life events. The article originated with a website that describes its output as being humorous or satirical in nature, as follows:

All events, persons, and companies depicted herein, including Disney, Walt Disney, and The Disney Company, are fictitious, and any similarity to actual persons, living, dead or otherwise, or to actual firms, is coincidental. Really. The same goes for any similarities to actual facts.

The satire site's Facebook page carries a similar disclaimer:

Only the most super-reliable theme park news from the most super-reliable theme park gurus. All stories internally peer-reviewed for minimum 17% accuracy.

On Feb. 11, 2021, The Associated Press reported that Carano was fired from her role as Cara Dune on the Disney+ series "The Mandalorian." Her departure followed a social media post that "likened the experience of Jews during the Holocaust to the U.S. political climate."

Lucasfilm said at the time that the company had "no plans" for her to return to the series in the future.

In sum, the story about Gina Carano, Chip Gaines, and Walt Disney Imagineering was labeled as satire. For background, here is why we sometimes write about satire/humor.