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Keep in mind that people in the animation biz knew Lasseter had been fired from Toy Story 4 almost a year before Disney officially announced his departure from the film.


Source: John Lasseter Already Out of Pixar for Good, Disney Waiting to Announce After “Coco” Oscar Run
Pixar’s John Lasseter is supposedly on a six month leave of absence from the animation house.
But I’m told that Lasseter has already negotiated his exit with parent company, Disney. They’re just waiting until “Coco,” Pixar’s release this weekend, has its Oscar run without interference. The six months would end just after the Academy Awards on March 4th.
Roger Friedman, November 24

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Disney Faces Daunting Questions in Wake of John Lasseter, Harvey Weinstein Scandals
Disney declined to answer inquiries by Variety as to whether the company was paying for Lasseter’s leave of absence and whether the entertainment giant intended to launch a formal investigation into the accusations. . . .
Sources told Variety that the executive’s behavior around young women has been known within the company since the 1990s. Whatever steps were taken to address it — which sources suggested included Disney having confronted Lasseter about the allegations — did not stop the complaints, which have continued until quite recently.
“This is not one guy going around acting inappropriately,” said Amid Amidi, the publisher of Cartoon Brew, a site that covers the animation industry. “This is one guy enabled by a massive corporate structure to act inappropriately.”
A former Pixar employee agreed, saying that CEO Bob Iger knew about a 2010 Oscar party where Lasseter was seen making out with a junior staffer.
“They’ve known for a long time,” the source said. “It has gone all the way to the top. I know personally that Bob was aware. … Everybody was aware. They just didn’t do anything about it.” . . .
The company could also face lawsuits from employees whom Lasseter never touched inappropriately, but who could allege that their careers suffered due to a discriminatory environment.
Rashida Jones emphasized that aspect in commenting on her own experience at Pixar. . . .
Some, however, worry that Lasseter’s boundless enthusiasm — which sets the tone at Pixar — will now be inhibited. Bill Capodagli, co-author of “Innovate the Pixar Way,” has written that Pixar’s culture of fun is essential to its success, and urged other companies to adopt it.
“I don’t think John ever grew out of his childlike enthusiasm — that’s probably what got him into trouble,” Capodagli said. “John didn’t have any boundaries. With the hugging and kissing and things like that, you have to know your audience and be aware of when people are uncomfortable with that kind of behavior.” . . .
Variety, November 29

Walt Disney Co. Declines To Say Whether It Is Investigating Allegations Against John Lasseter
It is not yet clear how – or even if – the Walt Disney Company intends to address the situation, or whether the company is capable of self-policing sexual misconduct at its top executive levels. What is becoming evident though is that many people at Disney had known about and tolerated Lasseter’s behavior for years. . . .
Sources have additionally told Cartoon Brew that they believe there has been at least one financial settlement from the Walt Disney Company to a woman, stemming from Lasseter’s actions. . . .
Cartoon Brew, November 29

Fresh Details Emerge of John Lasseter’s Behavior, Questions Arise About How Much Disney Knew
“He’s very tactile in a weird way,” said one former female executive who, like others, spoke with Deadline on condition that she not be named in the story for fear of reprisals. “He would rub my leg in a meeting … It was creepy and weird. It got to the point where I wouldn’t sit next to him in a meeting, because it undermined everything I said.”
There’s evidence Disney may well have been aware of troubling behavior on the part of the digital animation pioneer. Indeed the Pixar co-founder attended some wrap parties with a handler to ensure he would not engage in inappropriate conduct with women, say two people with direct knowledge of the situation. . . .
Two sources recounted Lasseter’s obsession with the young character actresses portraying Disney’s Fairies, a product line built around the character of Tinker Bell. . . .
One female executive with Disney’s consumer products group found herself the focus of Lasseter’s attentions, say sources who observed their interactions.
During one trip to New York City for the annual Toy Fair, Lasseter and a group of executives met in the lobby of Trump International Hotel and decided to go out for a “nightcap.” As the group walked out onto Columbus Circle, one person saw Lasseter pull the female executive tightly to him and move his hands over her body.
The female executive later sought to laugh off the encounter, saying she didn’t think her job description included “being groped by John Lasseter,” the observer said. “But you could tell she was pissed.” . . .
Deadline.com, November 29

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Disney Animation Sets ‘Day Of Listening’ For Staff Amid Uncertainty Over John Lasseter’s Future
According to one Disney veteran who spoke to THR, the “real reason behind this day of listening is to take the temperature of staff to see how likely it is that Lasseter can come back. That’s a stretch to put somebody back in charge of animation at such a storied brand as Disney after the revelations of his behavior.”
While such an event has never been held at Disney, similar events have been held at Disney’s other feature animation studio, Pixar. A studio source who wishes to remain anonymous told Cartoon Brew, “More than two years ago, Pixar conducted a ‘Day of Reflection’ at their Emeryville campus to understand what the issues were contributing to low morale. Much of the feedback pointed to Lasseter as the main problem. When he received the feedback, he sulked for a week before getting back to being King John.”
Cartoon Brew, January 31

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Two years ago? That would have been around the time Lasseter was secretly fired from Toy Story 4, no?

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COMMENTARY: Why Did ‘Coco’ Producer Darla K. Anderson Ditch Pixar Just Days After Winning The Oscar?
The timing of Anderson’s exit raises new questions about what is happening right now internally at Pixar. Even Brenda Chapman, who left Pixar following the release of Brave, waited for one month after her film’s theatrical release before exiting.
So, it’s extremely telling that Anderson, a staunch Pixar loyalist who was known by people at the studio to be extremely protective of the company brand, had planned to leave immediately after the end of Oscar season. . . .
While it’s unlikely that Anderson will speak anytime soon about why she chose to leave Pixar (she has also demurred on adequately addressing Lasseter’s actions), it would not be surprising to see other longtime Pixar upper brass follow the same path. That’s because one of the most damning revelations that has emerged out of the entire sordid Lasseter scandal is that his “missteps” were widely known to people who worked at the studio, and the studio’s management spent years protecting Lasseter at the expense of his victims. . . .
Anderson’s Pixar career may or may not be collateral damage of the Lasseter scandal, but her decision to sever ties with the company at the first convenient moment, not to mention the ringing endorsements from Disney brass, suggest that there’s more to the story. Whatever her particular situation may be, other Pixar careers will almost certainly come undone before the Lasseter drama has ended.
Cartoon Brew, March 9

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