John Lasseter Taking Leave of Absence From Pixar Amid "Missteps"

The Hollywood Reporter | 11/22/2017 | Kim Masters
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Pixar is set to release their next feature 'Coco' on Thanksgiving day.

Disney Animation head John Lasseter is taking a leave of absence from Pixar after acknowledging "painful" conversations and unspecified "missteps," he wrote in a memo to staff on Tuesday obtained by The Hollywood Reporter.

Lasseter - Founders - Pixar - Part - Graphics

Lasseter is best known as one of the founders of Pixar, which began as a part of the graphics group at LucasFilm. Along with Ed Catmull, he popularized CGI in animation with early films like Toy Story, A Bug's Life and Monster's Inc.

In 2006, after Disney purchased Pixar, Lasseter was named the chief creative officer of both Pixar and Walt Disney Animation Studios. He has since become the face of all Disney animation, overseeing the recent resurgence of the studio's namesake brand with properties like Frozen and Moana.

Lasseter - Toy - Story - Toy - Story

Lasseter, who directed Toy Story and Toy Story 2 among other Pixar films, produces or executive produces every Pixar project and he executive produces every WDA feature. While Lasseter has only won two Oscars (one is a specialty Oscar for his work on Toy Story), Pixar has racked up an impressive eight best animated feature wins. Under Lasseter's purview, WDA has picked up three wins, most recently with last year's Zootopia.

Pixar films have grossed over $6 billion at the domestic box office. The Emeryville-based company is set to release their next feature, Coco, on Thanksgiving day. Pixar is currently working on a sequel to The Incredibles and the fourth Toy Story installment. WDA will release the Wreck It Ralph sequel next year.

Lasseter - Memo - Employees

Lasseter's full memo to employees is below.

I have always wanted our animation studios to be places where creators can explore their vision with the support and collaboration of other gifted animators and storytellers. This kind of creative culture takes constant vigilance to maintain. It’s built...
(Excerpt) Read more at: The Hollywood Reporter
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