As Robert Iger, the newly named chief executive of Walt Disney Co., seeks to repair the company's fractured relationship with Pixar Animation Studios, he faces a big obstacle: Pixaren't.
That's what animators have dubbed a nondescript white warehouse in Glendale that Disney recently transformed into a factory to produce sequels to Pixar movies, including "Toy Story," "Finding Nemo" and "Monsters, Inc."
"It does muddy the waters for creating some sort of deal," said Tom Sito, president emeritus of Hollywood's local animation guild and a former Disney animator. "Pixar has very jealously guarded the integrity of their creative properties and are loath to trust them to others who are more economy-minded. It's like somebody else taking your children to school."
The new Pixar-sequel unit, housed next door to rival DreamWorks Animation SKG Inc. and just minutes from Disney's main studio lot in Burbank, intends to make one sequel a year, each costing less than $100 million, sources said.