Reuters | Barron’s: Pixar Loses Out as Disney Talks End

Pixar Animation Studios Inc. may have assumed risks and disadvantages when lengthy negotiations to renew its movie distribution deal with Walt Disney Co. broke down last week, according to a report in the latest edition of Barron’s.

Shares of Pixar rose 3.4 percent to $66.39 on Friday while those of Disney fell 1.8 percent to $24, a day after the firms announced they had failed to extend a pact that has yielded such blockbusters as “Finding Nemo” and “Toy Story.”

Pixar will face Disney as a rival in the increasingly competitive animated film business and Pixar’s new partner is unlikely to be as strong as Disney in family entertainment, Barron’s said.

At the rate Disney is divesting itself of its Feature Animation division, by the time Pixar has to “face Disney as a rival”, there won’t be anything left except Television Animation, and their interminable series of intellectually bankrupt sequels to films that needed no sequels.

Which, since Disney will retain ownership of and sequel rights to the existing Pixar features, will probably include cel-animated versions of “Toy Story 3: Toyz N The Hood,” “Toy Story 2 1/2” (told from Jessie’s point of view), “Buzz Lightyear 2: The Wrath of Zurg,” and “Grilling Nemo.” I can hardly wait.

Los Angeles Times | A Clash of CEO Egos Gets Blame in Disney-Pixar Split

Several months before last summer’s release of “Finding Nemo,” the chairman of Walt Disney Co., Michael Eisner, told his board not to expect a blockbuster and suggested that such a fate might not be all that bad.

Eisner said that although Pixar Animation Studios was excited about its film, he was not impressed by early cuts he’d seen, according to people familiar with the matter. Should the movie falter, Eisner said, Disney could gain negotiating leverage in contentious talks to extend its partnership with the highflying animation company.

Pixar, Eisner concluded, may be headed for “a reality check.”

The computer-animated film would, in fact, prove to be a reality check — for Eisner. The critically acclaimed “Finding Nemo” would soon make more money than any animated film in history. Advantage: Pixar.

Let’s see, what does this remind me of?

Oh, yes. It reminds me of Walt Disney Productions’ leaving it’s longtime production partner and distributor RKO when Walt felt he was getting a raw deal, creating his own distribution subsidiary, Buena Vista.

It also reminds me of several years earlier, when Walt Disney split with an earlier partner for whom he was making “Oswald, the Lucky Rabbit” cartoons. The partner kept Oswald, forcing Walt to design a new star character, Mickey Mouse. And the rest, as they say…

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