Disney pauses all business in Russia amid ‘unrelenting assault’ on Ukraine

An animated scene of a family of 11 in front of a house
Disney, maker of “Encanto,” is the latest global company to cease operations in Russia.

Walt Disney Co. on Thursday said it would “pause” all of its businesses in Russia in response to Vladimir Putin’s ongoing invasion of Ukraine.

“Given the unrelenting assault on Ukraine and the escalating humanitarian crisis, we are taking steps to pause all other businesses in Russia,” a Disney spokesperson said in a statement.

The move comes after Disney last week said it would pause the theatrical release of movies planned for Russian cinemas, including Pixar’s “Turning Red.”


Disney’s businesses in Russia include the licensing of content and consumer products, cruises, National Geographic magazine and tours, local productions and television channels, Disney said.

Burbank-based Disney is the latest global company to cease operations in Russia during Putin’s war as businesses further isolate the country and governments in the U.S. and Europe impose sanctions. McDonald’s and Coca-Cola are among businesses that have shut down in Russia during the backlash against Putin’s attack.

McDonald’s said Tuesday it is temporarily closing all of its 850 restaurants in Russia in response to the country’s invasion of Ukraine.

Netflix recently said it would not comply with a law that would require the streaming service to carry Russian federal television channels, including Channel One and programming from the Russian Orthodox Church in Russia. Apple said it would end all product sales in Russia and limit Apple Pay and other services in the country. Universal Music Group has also said it would cease operations in Russia.

While some of Disney’s business activities immediately shut down, others, including channels and some licensing, will take longer because of contractual issues, the company said. Disney workers in Russia will remain employed.