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Pixar - Disney: Can anyone explain?

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Pixar - Disney: Can anyone explain?

Old 10-25-07, 10:32 AM
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Pixar - Disney: Can anyone explain?

I admit my ignorance. Pixar was once bought by Disney but then decided to go it alone, which was good for Pixar and bad for Disney. Now they're back together again - or are they? Why, for instance, is Ratatouille a Pixar-Disney collaboration (or is it?) and why is Meet the Robinsons a Disney solo effort but with a Pixar alumnus as producer?

Old 10-25-07, 11:03 AM
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From Wikipedia:

Initially, Pixar was a high-end computer hardware company whose core product was the Pixar Image Computer, a system primarily sold to government agencies and the medical community. One of the leading buyers of Pixar Image Computers was Disney studios, which was using the device as part of their secretive CAPS project, using the machine and custom software to migrate the laborious Ink and Paint part of the 2D animation process to a more automated and thus efficient method. The Image Computer never sold well. In a bid to drive sales of the system, Pixar employee John Lasseter—who had long been creating short demonstration animations, such as Luxo Jr., to show off the device's capabilitiess—premiered his creations at SIGGRAPH, the computer graphics industry's largest convention, to great fanfare.

As poor sales of Pixar's computers threatened to put the company out of business, Lasseter's animation department began producing computer-animated commercials for outside companies. Early successes included campaigns for Tropicana, Listerine, and LifeSavers. During this period, Pixar continued its relationship with Walt Disney Feature Animation, a studio whose corporate parent would ultimately become its most important partner. In 1991, after substantial layoffs in the company's computer department, Pixar made a $26 million deal with Disney to produce three computer-animated feature films, the first of which was Toy Story. Pixar was re-incorporated on December 9, 1995.

Read the rest here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pixar#Disney_and_Pixar
Old 10-25-07, 12:39 PM
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Thanks, but stick around. I'm sure to have more questions...
Old 10-25-07, 12:39 PM
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Ratatouille is not a Pixar-Disney collaboration.

Disney merely distributes thePixar films. The Disney artists don't work on Pixar films.

And vice-versa, Pixar artists don't work on the Disney in-house 3-D films, such as Chicken Little and Meet the Robinsons.

Pixar gets to have the powerful Walt Disney company to distribute their films, while Disney gets to use the Pixar characters in all of their licensing, merchandising, theme parks, etc.

And from a business standpoint:

Director John Lasseter is the Chief Creative Officer of BOTH Pixar and Disney. I figure Disney chose Lasseter to lead b/c of his proven track record with his own films and the Disney board trusts him into steering their company in the right direction after the many misfires from the Eisner regime.
Old 10-25-07, 01:03 PM
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I thought stuff like Chicken Little and Meet the Robinsons was done during the brief time when Disney and Pixar were considering "breaking up" but that the staffs were combined once Pixar came back on board?
Old 10-25-07, 01:11 PM
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Originally Posted by jeffkjoe
Ratatouille is not a Pixar-Disney collaboration.

Disney merely distributes thePixar films. The Disney artists don't work on Pixar films.

And vice-versa, Pixar artists don't work on the Disney in-house 3-D films, such as Chicken Little and Meet the Robinsons.

Pixar gets to have the powerful Walt Disney company to distribute their films, while Disney gets to use the Pixar characters in all of their licensing, merchandising, theme parks, etc.

And from a business standpoint:

Director John Lasseter is the Chief Creative Officer of BOTH Pixar and Disney. I figure Disney chose Lasseter to lead b/c of his proven track record with his own films and the Disney board trusts him into steering their company in the right direction after the many misfires from the Eisner regime.
OK. I've read up on that but I have yet to learn how Disney can maintain a CGI animation culture distinct from Pixar, now that it belongs to the Disney family. After all, how is Meet the Robinsons not a Pixar film? Aside from the fact that it has nothing to do with Pixar, of course... And is it economical to maintain two CGI animation branches at Disney?
Old 10-25-07, 01:18 PM
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Originally Posted by fujishig
I thought stuff like Chicken Little and Meet the Robinsons was done during the brief time when Disney and Pixar were considering "breaking up" but that the staffs were combined once Pixar came back on board?

It is true that Disney created a special 3-D division called "CIRCLE 7 ANIMATION" that was going to simply do sequels to all Pixar films, i.e. Toy Story 3, Monsters Inc 2, Bug's Life 2, in case of a scenario where Pixar did NOT sign on to do another deal with Disney.

But Disney ALSO has a CG division that handles their own homemade projects like Meet the Robinsons, Chicken Little, and the upcoming Rapunzel Unbraided. Since their 2-D hand-drawn cell animation died after the release of Home on the Range, Disney is now an exclusive 3-D computer animation company that's separate from Pixar.

Once Pixar and Disney came to an agreement, Pixar took over Toy Story 3 (thank God), stopped production on ALL OTHER planned Pixar sequels (thank God again), and most of the Circle 7 staff were transferred to the Disney 3-D division.


But Disney and Pixar artists never merged together into one company.
Old 10-25-07, 01:20 PM
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Originally Posted by baracine
OK. I've read up on that but I have yet to learn how Disney can maintain a CGI animation culture distinct from Pixar, now that it belongs to the Disney family. After all, how is Meet the Robinsons not a Pixar film? Aside from the fact that it has nothing to do with Pixar, of course... And is it economical to maintain two CGI animation branches at Disney?
My understanding is that MTR & Chicken Little were made in anticipation Pixar bolting. Now that Pixar is owned by Disney all cgi movies will be handled by Pixar while Disney will focus on traditional animation.
Old 10-25-07, 01:56 PM
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Originally Posted by jeffkjoe
That's incorrect. 2-D animation is dead at Disney.

Their future films will all be 3-D. Their next film is 2009's Rapunzel, Glen Keane's first CG effort.
I thought there was talk that the whole 3D only thing was no longer the case.
Old 10-25-07, 02:02 PM
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oddly the stop motion/ clay animation wave never picked up even though movie's like 'Corpse Bride' and 'W&G Curse of the WereRabbit' won Academy Awards.
Old 10-25-07, 02:10 PM
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Don't let anybody add anything! I understand perfectly now!

Too bad for 2-D animation, though!



I will always blame its failure on Atlantis. Grrrr... Atlantis!
Old 10-25-07, 02:14 PM
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Originally Posted by jeffkjoe
That's incorrect. 2-D animation is dead at Disney.

Their future films will all be 3-D. Their next film is 2009's Rapunzel, Glen Keane's first CG effort.

May want to tell the folks working on The Princess and the Frog

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0780521/
Old 10-25-07, 02:20 PM
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Originally Posted by ween
May want to tell the folks working on The Princess and the Frog

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0780521/

Whoops, my bad....

....I forgot this was in the production pipeline and got used to the notion that Disney wouldn't do any more 2-D animated flicks.
Old 10-25-07, 02:22 PM
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But, seriously, folks, I see trouble a'brewin' ahead... Not money-wise because Pixar films are obviously profitable but because you'll have Disney Studios trying to preserve their wonderful heritage of successes (and failures) while trying to "look forward" and, at the same time, down the hall, the Pixar people insisting on their separate culture and tradition while acknowledging their debt to the wonderful examples set by Walt Disney (and others)...

It will probably get confusing...

Hell, I'm already confused.
Old 10-25-07, 02:23 PM
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This is the first I've heard of the title being "Rapunzel Unbraided," and I hope they drop the "unbraided" part. It sounds cheesy, like "reloaded" or "unleashed."
Old 10-25-07, 02:25 PM
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Originally Posted by Drexl
This is the first I've heard of the title being "Rapunzel Unbraided," and I hope they drop the "unbraided" part. It sounds cheesy, like "reloaded" or "unleashed."
Snow White... unbodiced!
Old 10-25-07, 02:31 PM
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Originally Posted by baracine
But, seriously, folks, I see trouble a'brewin' ahead... Not money-wise because Pixar films are obviously profitable but because you'll have Disney Studios trying to preserve their wonderful heritage of successes (and failures) while trying to "look forward" and, at the same time, down the hall, the Pixar people insisting on their separate culture and tradition while acknowledging their debt to the wonderful examples set by Walt Disney (and others)...

It will probably get confusing...

Hell, I'm already confused.
I'm confused as to why you are confused. From the wikipedia article:
Lasseter and Catmull's oversight of both the Disney and Pixar studios did not mean that the two studios were merging, however. In fact, additional conditions were laid out as part of the deal to ensure that Pixar remains a separate entity, a concern that many analysts had about the Disney deal.
Old 10-25-07, 02:35 PM
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Originally Posted by FinkPish
I'm confused as to why you are confused.


It's this new 3-D universe. It's just confusing...

Last edited by baracine; 10-25-07 at 02:44 PM.
Old 10-25-07, 02:42 PM
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Originally Posted by ween
May want to tell the folks working on The Princess and the Frog

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0780521/
While you're talking to them, head over and let the folks working on reviving the animated shorts know as well.

2D Disney is NOT dead.
Old 10-25-07, 02:54 PM
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Both studios are open to non 3D animation projects. Pixar may produce live-action films as well. I believe Lassetar has said it depends on the director and story in what style a film is made.
Old 10-25-07, 04:15 PM
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Brad Bird has sights to direct a live-action film as his next. And I believe he's tied up with Pixar exclusively, so that might prove true sooner rather than later.
Old 10-25-07, 05:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Drop
Both studios are open to non 3D animation projects.
Thank God!

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