The Walt Disney Co. used the occasion of its 2007 Investor Conference to rename a few of its assets, kick around the idea of building a bunch of mini theme parks and show some love to what some consider an outdated medium: hand-drawn animated feature films.
Ed Catmull, president of Pixar and Disney Animation Studios, said Thursday in Orlando that he and John Lasseter, chief creative officer of those same entities, intend to bring back traditionally animated movies. The news comes little more than two months after Disney eliminated 160 jobs from its staff of 800 at its Burbank animation studio that deals in movies and TV shows.
Catmull said Pixar is running much the same as it has since before Disney purchased it last year. But the Burbank facility housed remarkable artists who "were not kneaded together in the right way," hence the layoffs.
Catmull expressed an appreciation for animation of the CG and traditional variety, provided a worthy story is being told. "Quality is the best business plan," he said.
He and Lasseter showed clips of the next several animated films from Disney and Pixar, all of which are computer-generated: "Ratatouille," "Meet the Robinsons," "Wall-E," "American Dog" and "Toy Story 3."