For the first time since his abrupt return a week prior, Walt Disney Co. CEO Bob Iger spoke to employees at a town hall on Monday morning. Leslie Sykes, a KABC anchor, presided over the town hall.

Iger claimed that although the request “was a surprise,” he “had some sense that the call could come that day.” As a result, he planned ahead by consulting his wife Willow Bay about whether he ought to go back to Disney in the event of a request.

He claimed that although he was “emotionally distanced, purposely” from the firm when he departed, he was “never entirely removed” given his love for Disney. “Her reaction was, ‘If you are asked, you have to do it,'” he recalled.

Iger answered a wide range of questions from staff members, some of whom were present in the room and others who were not, some of which were recorded and some of which were anonymous. They covered topics such as potential business deals, his desire for staff to return to the office, the company’s relationship with the state of Florida, and whether it should get involved in political controversies.

However, he also stated that the employment freeze implemented by his predecessor Bob Chapek will continue as he works to streamline Disney’s cost structure, describing it as a reasonable decision given the challenges facing the industry. He said, “We need to work swiftly, but we also need to think strategically.”

Regarding M&A, Iger called the notion that Apple may purchase Disney “total speculation” and said he doesn’t anticipate the firm making any sizable acquisitions during his second term as CEO.

“We have a wonderful set of assets here,” he said, adding that every acquisition had also brought aboard individuals who had been essential to Disney’s success. Although nothing lasts forever, I am incredibly at ease with all of our resources.

Additionally, he implied that he wanted Disney employees to collaborate.

Iger addressed Disney staff, “I happen to feel that there is significant benefit in working from the same spot in creative businesses. It inspires energy and fosters creativity greatly. Although I am not declaring anything, I believe that is crucial.

However, he noted, Disney and most businesses ought to be more accommodating with regards to how staff members balance their personal and work life.

He was also questioned over Disney’s difficult relationship with Florida, which has moved to revoke the Reedy Creek Improvement District, which houses Walt Disney World, in response to the corporation’s clumsy handling of the state’s infamous “Don’t Say Gay” law.

Iger said of the decision to close Reedy Creek, “I had no notion what its repercussions are in terms of the business itself,” adding that he has to find out more. “For a very long time, Florida has been very important to us, and we have been very important to Florida.”

Iger provided a sophisticated, statesmanlike response when asked about Disney’s attitude on taking political positions.

Iger stated, “I think there’s a misconception about what politics is here. Some of the topics that have been linked to Disney and have shown to be contentious have been labeled political, but I don’t think they are.

“Do I like the company being in the news for all the wrong reasons? Of course not,” he replied, adding that he will make an effort to calm things down “to the extent that I can”.

Iger also talked about the company’s response and technological adaptation.

Nothing, he continued, “is going to stop technology from developing,” noting how Disney has frequently embraced new technologies to tell better stories.

To that aim, Iger cited the “sort of interesting” and “something that at some time in the future the company would embrace” drawings and movies produced by artificial intelligence algorithms.

However, he continued, such a move is probably “a long way off.”