Disney and Pixar’s John Lasseter is leaving both companies later this year following reports that he allegedly sexually harassed a number of his female colleagues during his career as the chief creative officer. Now, Disney and Pixar have announced who will replace him.
Today in a public statement, Disney announced that Frozen co-director and co-writer Jennifer Lee will step into a new role as Walt Disney Animation Studios’ COO and Inside Out director Pete Docter will work in the same role at Pixar. As the new heads of two of Disney’s largest branches, the pair will work closely with the company’s chairman, Alan Horn, who expressed his faith in their abilities to get the job done:
“Jennifer Lee and Pete Docter are two of the most gifted filmmakers and storytellers I’ve ever had the pleasure to work with. Pete, the genius creative force behind Up, Inside Out, and Monsters, Inc., has been an integral part of Pixar almost since the beginning and is a huge part of its industry-leading success.
Jenn, in bringing her bold vision to the boundary-breaking Frozen, has helped infuse Disney Animation with a new and exciting perspective. Each of them embodies the unique spirit, culture, and values of these renowned animation studios, and I couldn’t be more thrilled to have them to lead us into the future.”
In their own statements both Lee and Docter shared their gratitude, and Lee emphasized how crucial Disney’s overall culture of collaboration is to her vision for the company’s future:
“Animation is the most collaborative art form in the world, and it is with the partnership of my fellow filmmakers, artists, and innovators that we look ahead to the future. My hope is to support the incredible talent we have, find new voices, and work together to tell original stories.”
Lasseter is scheduled to leave Disney and Pixar by the year’s end.