Last Thursday, March 8, long-time Pixar Producer, Darla K. Anderson announced her resignation from Pixar via an exclusive discussion with The Hollywood Reporter. The announcement was a surprise to fans and Pixarians alike — especially coming right after her big Academy Awards and Producer’s Guild of America wins for Coco.
Why it comes as a surprise is that we often attribute success and praise to longevity at a company, but Darla has been known internally as a mentor and externally as a staunch supporter of LGBTQX and women’s rights. Although she didn’t explicitly say what her next venture will be, we would anticipate it will be something which will impact herself, the community and more than likely, an even larger percent of the population as well.
“I’ve had a magical and privileged experience working at Pixar for over two decades. The creativity, imagination and innovation at Pixar is second to none. I’m truly grateful to have been a part of this historic journey and hold excitement for my next chapter.”Darla Anderson
Her announcement, coming on International Women’s Day made us wonder if it was a hint that her next adventure would be related to women’s rights. Or, was it a statement towards the issues facing Pixar’s leadership in the wake of John Lasseter’s hiatus?
Whatever her reasons, we certainly wish her the best and can’t wait to see where her journey takes her. Within the studio, other employees have offered a lot of support towards Darla as well. In The Hollywood Reporter article, Bob Iger, Ed Catmull, and Jim Morris offered their thoughts on Darla’s impact to the studio.
“Darla is not only a storied producer, but one of the true pioneers in the creation of computer-animated feature films. From A Bug’s Life to the sublime Coco, Darla has produced a remarkable body of movies that have not only raised the bar for animation but for cinema as a whole.”Pixar Chief – Jim Morris
“I have had the pleasure of working closely with Darla for over 25 years. She was there from the beginning, when we were all figuring out how to make a computer-graphics animated film, and I personally owe her a debt of gratitude for all her contributions to our studio and our industry.”Pixar President – Ed Catmull
Additionally, I don’t think the impact of Darla’s departure will be felt more than by Director Lee Unkrich (who she worked with on Coco as well as Toy Story 3). He reached out offering his support on Twitter.
Likewise, Dan Scanlon, Director of the upcoming Pixar film which will take us into a suburban fantasy world offered his praise of Darla as well.
What are your thoughts on Darla’s departure from the studio? Leave a comment below or chat about it in the Pixar Post Forum thread about this news.