Pixar Seeks to Restore Reputation Through Sequels

Bloomberg UK ran an interesting piece yesterday about Pixar, their president, Jim Morris, and his strategy to regain the studio’s prestige. I recommend the whole piece for the interviews and even the header image. This image by artist Sean Dong shows various icons of Pixar’s past as well-loved toys, some missing parts. Maybe it’s a reference to Disney periodically taking them out and abusing them like the toys at Sunnyside in Toy Story 3

The article by Thomas Buckley details the downturn in Pixar’s box office returns following the disgrace of founding member and legendary director John Lasseter. It also goes into the effects of COVID-19 and the poor reception of films like Lightyear. In short, there’s a lot to digest in the article. I’ll focus on the studio’s turn towards sequels to save its damaged reputation. Still, I recommend the whole thing if you’re a Pixar fan or just interested in the financial implications.

Pixar Sequels

Pixar president Jim Morris had this to say of Elemental’s underperformance last year:  “We were all kind of gut-punched, and it was tough on morale. I thought it was a good film with a Pixar feel, so when it didn’t work, that was like, ‘Whoa.’ I was thinking, ‘Do people just not want to see the kind of film we make anymore? Is that done?’”

As Bloomberg asserts, Morris is pivoting to a mixture of sequels and new films to salvage the Pixar brand. The Incredibles and Finding Nemo are being eyed for expansions; Bloomberg says “reboots,” but God, I hope it’s not that. The studio will aim for 2-3 films per year instead of the usual one, with half of the movies being sequels or spin-offs. Pixar will also cut down on its Disney+ offerings, which will only be TV shows, not movies. This comes in the wake of Morris’ May 21st announcement of 175 layoffs amid “restructuring.”

Inside Out 2 is a test for this new strategy, along with, to a lesser extent, its spin-off Disney+ series. The original article explores Pixar’s history with the brain trust, its head creatives, and founders like Steve Jobs and Ed Catmull. I can’t help but wonder if sequels, offshoots, and reboots are what those people would have been proud of. I used to idolize John Lasseter, but now it’s hard to care about what he might think. It’s so disheartening to hear this from one of the most sincere, creative movie houses that used to make consistently great films (bar the occasional Cars, which I don’t hate). I’m already dreading Inside Out 2, an unnecessary add-on to a film that needs no further explanation and stands on its own. If they do touch The Incredibles again after butchering it with an insipid sequel, that’s the only thing that could be worse, at least to me. 

Comments (1)

June 3, 2024 at 6:29 am

John Lasseter is an innocent man who was smeared by a bunch of woke feminazi’s who wanted him out for the crime of being a white male. Everyone knows this. They used false allegations to remove him and replace him with someone more “diverse”. You are a disgusting, cancel culture, SJW for writing about him this way. You sicken me, and you do NOT deserve to write for a site like this. You are what G+G was founded to oppose. I don’t know what happened to this site that they hired people like this. Guess they sold out.

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