MouseLuxo - The Soul Of Pixar Is Alive At Apple

The most Pixar movie of the summer is not from Pixar. It’s from Apple TV+ and the lightning-rod filmmaker-executive who turned Pixar into a superpower: John Lasseter.

Five years ago, Mr. Lasseter was toppled by allegations about his behavior in the workplace. Almost overnight, his many accomplishments — building Pixar from scratch, forging the megawatt “Toy Story” and “Cars” franchises, reviving a moribund Walt Disney Animation, delivering “Frozen,” winning Oscars — became a footnote.

Lasseter is now on the verge of professional redemption. His first animated feature since he left Disney-Pixar will arrive on Apple’s subscription streaming service on Friday. Called “Luck,” the $140 million movie follows an unlucky young woman who discovers a secret world where magical creatures make good luck (the Department of Right Place, Right Time) and bad luck (a pet waste research and design lab dedicated to “tracked it in the house”).

Things go terribly wrong, resulting in a comedic adventure involving an unusual dragon, bunnies in hazmat suits, leprechaun millennials and an overweight German unicorn in a too-tight tracksuit. The upshot: With its glistening animation, attention to detail, story twists and emotional ending, “Luck” has all the hallmarks of a Pixar release.

https://www.nytimes.com/2022/08/01/business/media/john-lasse…

Fuskie
Who thinks if you want to put a finger on why Pixar has been missing at the box office, this may be your answer…


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I couldn’t get the article, as I don’t have a subscription, and I guess it isn’t posted yet on my library’s NY Times access.

I don’t know if this would essentially be a duplicate of info, but here is an interesting Reporter article on the situation. I forgot about where Lasseter ended up and didn’t realize the company (Skydance Ani) made a deal with AAPL:

https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/movies/movie-features/john…

From the sounds of it, the company wants to build out in the same way as Pixar did and then sell itself to some other media company, or perhaps a SPAC (perhaps after going IPO). Under better market conditions, of course. Do you think there would be a chance AAPL might buy the company eventually? Interestingly, it’s odd to me AAPL didn’t try to create its own Pixar-like company within the tech giant’s spaceship-like campus. It could have seeded an internal start-up and see if it could replicate what Jobs did so many years ago.

I read another article about David Ellison and how he invested some of his money (which presumably was old family money, I’m not sure if he did anything on his own or not) in Hollywood and eventually produced some top hits…he certainly has the mogul bug and saw an inefficiency in the market as far as Lasseter was concerned. (I think too Larry Ellison has a daughter in Hollywood, I want to say her company is called Anapurna? Hope I got that bit right, because it’s always fascinating when offspring of billionaires start to play the Hollywood game…that other article made a point of David Ellison wanting to avoid the humiliation of other-people’s-money syndrome…)

Here’s Wikipedia’s information on David Ellison: Ellison is the CEO and founder of Skydance Media. In 2010, with his father then the sixth richest person in the world, and a partnership deal with Paramount, Skydance was able to raise $350 million in equity and credit to co-finance and co-produce movies.[4] The company’s films include Mission: Impossible – Fallout, Annihilation, World War Z, True Grit, Jack Reacher, Star Trek Into Darkness, Star Trek Beyond and many more. With the 2010 transaction, Ellison was named to Variety’s Dealmaker list for 2010[5] and the Forbes 30 Under 30 list in 2011.[6]

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_Ellison

OTFoolish

1 Like

Thanks for that info. Confirms the source of money, although I didn’t know Paramount was also involved in the company (in some financial fashion, anyway, it sounds). And obviously Ellison may use the animation unit to make more of an original mark in Hollywood as opposed to just being other people’s money…