Disney has shut down its metaverse division and laid off all of the team’s 50 or so members as part of a larger restructuring process. The division was tasked with finding interactive ways to tell Disney’s stories using new technologies. Former Disney CEO Bob Chapek had tapped company veteran Mike White to lead the team, and White will remain at the company in an unclear role. Chapek’s plan to launch an Amazon Prime-like subscription service for Disney has reportedly also been scrapped. The division’s closure doesn’t mean that Disney is abandoning its metaverse ambitions for good. Bob Iger, who returned as CEO in November 2022, sees a future in the metaverse, as evidenced by his decision to join the board of an animated avatar startup. Disney has been under pressure from investors to implement serious cost-cutting measures, and it previously announced that it was going to lay off 7,000 employees. The metaverse team might simply be the first team impacted by Disney’s significant restructuring efforts, with three rounds of layoffs planned, the first of which will take place this week.