The difficulties of Disney’s Pixar Animation just keep piling on. After delaying The Good Dinosaur, leaving 2014 without a Pixar film, Pixar closed down its Canadian branch in October and is now laying off 5 percent of its remaining California staff. In total, Pixar has lost almost 150 employees in the last 2 months.
Located in Vancouver, Pixar’s Canadian studio produced many short films including Air Mater, Small Fry, and Partysaurus Rex. The decision to consolidate all operations under Pixar’s headquarters in Emeryville, California came one month after the announcement that Bob Petersen (Up) was no longer directing The Good Dinosaur. Now the staff at Emeryville will be reduced even further.
Said a spokesperson, “At Pixar we are constantly re-evaluating the creative and business needs of our studio. With the release date change of The Good Dinosaur, we have realigned our production and support priorities, which includes a small reduction in our staffing levels.” Similarly, Pixar cited ‘creative and business needs’ as the reasons for shutting down the Vancouver office. While unsurprising that a studio with a lighter-than-expected release schedule would reduce its staff, the latest news coming from Pixar seems unsettling to longtime followers. For now, audiences can still look forward to the upcoming releases of The Good Dinosaur and Inside Out in 2015.
In the meantime, Disney will release its own CG-animated film Frozen next week.