Updated – this rumor has been confirmed in a recent LA Times article, read our updated post here.
We would like to begin this post with a focus on one word – and that would be “rumor”. The story of Bob Peterson no longer having an active production role on Pixar’s next feature film The Good Dinosaur has been swirling over the internet for the past few days (via BlueSkyDisney and /Film).
Having heard rumblings of this rumor shortly after the 2013 D23 Expo (August 15), we didn’t want to report on the story until we had additional details, but today with the rush of articles, we felt that we had to address this story and include our thoughts regarding Peterson and Pixar.
During the 2013 D23 Expo, when co-director Peter Sohn and producer Denise Ream (previously not noted as a producer for the movie) took the stage, you could almost hear the whispering rumor mill on the internet wondering about Bob Peterson’s and John Walker’s absence. This came as a surprise to many since The Good Dinosaurproduction team was previously reported as, Peterson (Director), Sohn (Co-Director) and Walker as the producer. Any news of an official change of the reigns hasn’t been made and it has yet to be confirmed by Disney•Pixar.
Our thoughts on the early rumors are many – from Peterson perhaps stepping down from the project himself, to perhaps stepping away from animation for a bit and working on live-action films (like Brad Bird or Andrew Stanton), to this being a story of falsehood and nothing more than a rumor. One thing that is for sure is that Pixar always focuses on the story and the quality of the film, perhaps if there were creative differences, or The Good Dinosaur needed to go into a new direction the Pixar brain trust would make the appropriate call.
Additionally, we also feel the word “removal” that is being used, could be a bit harsh of a verbiage choice when it comes to this information. If this rumor proves to be true, it is worth noting that many of our beloved Pixar films had a production change-up during filming. Starting with Ratatouille (lead Director change from Jan Pinkava to Brad Bird), to Cars 2 (lead Director change from Brad Lewis to John Lasseter) and of course Brave (Director change from Brenda Chapman to Mark Andrews). It is also worth noting that if Peterson no longer has an active production role on The Good Dinosaur, that his hard work during the pre-production and current production won’t be able to be completely removed. Although the storyline may change, you can’t just “remove” Peterson’s passion that he started the film with.
At this point, no official word of a release date change has been announced for The Good Dinosaur and is still slated for a May 2014 release – what are your thoughts? Will the release date change, will the plot points change drastically or just minimally. A few readers have already started conversations in the Pixar Post Forum regarding the Director change rumors as well as Denise Ream stepping in as a Producer – keep the conversation going.