Tuesday, June 20, 2006

El Disneyo on Tuesday

I continue my trek with 401(k) booklets slung over a bony shoulder. Today I was at multiple Disney facilities, where I learned... that Ed Catmull and John Lasseter had hosted another Feature Animation meeting on a Disney soundstage for the staff. They reviewed the status of various projects and answered questions from employees. They will, I'm told, be holding these meetings every few months to keep everybody in the loop (always a fine idea). Word is that there will be an ongoing slate of projects in a variety of formats (first release to be "Robinsons" next Spring), and that Personal Service Contracts will be phasing out (no big surprise there.) Everyone I talked to was upbeat about the meeting. I have it on good authority that John Lasseter was wearing a Hawaiian shirt. (Which brings me to the most important point of this post: Twenty-nine years ago in 1977, Woolie Reitherman -- former animator and creative head of Disney Feature Animation -- had a style of dress that included: a shell necklace, a Hawaiian shirt, white slacks, and running shoes. Now, in 2006, John Lasseter -- former animator and creative head of Disney Feature Animation -- has a style of dress that includes, a Hawaiian shirt, dark pants, and running shoes. Coincidence? Or just one small part or God's infinite and intricately designed plan. I think the latter.)

2 comments:

Tcsnwhite said...

Steve,

quick question- I have been curious about the state of the leadership at Walt Disney Feature Animation since John and Ed are now in charge. Mainly what I want to know is, are all those "creative executives" still around, and are they still trying to mess with the process? Or did Ed and John finally give all those unnecessary people at WDFA the boot?

I understand it is going to take a good while for ED to fully re-configure the businnes/leadership part of WDFA, but I am just interested in what state it is in now?
an update on that would be great, if you could (fully understand if you can't comment).

Thanks for your time (and your wonderful blog),
Tcsnwhite

Steve Hulett said...

I've been told by those in high authority that crative decisions are being pushed down (or "up" as the case may be) to the people doing the creating. And that executives are going to be more hands off. (This point has also come out in various public statements over the past few months.)

Now, if this means that some middle management is going to be laid off, I have no idea. Probably, in time, it will. Right now I'm sure John and Ed are still focused on "Cars."

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