One plan has former Disney chief atop publisher

Are there newspapers in Michael Eisner’s future?

The Los Angeles Times reported Wednesday that some creditors of Tribune Co. are floating a plan to recruit Eisner as chairman of the Chicago-based newspaper and TV station operator after it emerges from bankruptcy and Comcast exec Jeff Shell as CEO, replacing the current regime of Sam Zell and Randy Michaels.

Eisner told Daily Variety on Monday that he has been buying Tribune Co.’s debt.

“The salvation of the newspaper is some kind of pay arrangement (online), which will evolve into something significant,” Eisner said.

But sources with knowledge of the situation cautioned that nothing is likely to happen in the near term because Tribune’s bankruptcy is far from settled, amid seemingly endless wrangling among the banks and creditors that own the bulk of Tribune’s $13 billion in debt.

Reps for Eisner and Tribune declined comment.

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