John Lasseter named head of Skydance Animation amid social media backlash

Screen | 1/9/2019 | Jeremy Kay
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News on Wednesday (9) that John Lasseter has been hired to run Skydance Animation after leaving Disney amid allegations of inappropriate behaviour has sparked a social media backlash.

Lasseter, whose personal directing credits include Toy Story, Toy Story 2, A Bug’s Life, Cars and Cars 2, officially parted ways with Disney on December 31 2018 following a six-month break after complaints surfaced in late 2017 about his behaviour towards women in the workplace.

Wednesday - Development - Change - Fortune - Lasseter

Wednesday’s development marks a stunning change in fortune for Lasseter in the #MeToo era at a time when other high-profile figures accused of improper behaviour are facing Hollywood exile, wide opprobrium, and in some cases legal action.

In a memo to staff on Wednesday, Skydance Media CEO David Ellison said he had employed outside counsel to investigate allegations against Lasseter, adding, ”While we would never minimize anyone’s subjective views on behavior, we are confident after many substantive conversations with John, and as the investigation has affirmed, that his mistakes have been recognized.”

Former - President - Skydance - Animation - Family

Former president of Skydance animation and family entertainment Bill Damaschke will transition from his role and Ellison said he hoped the executive would remain at the company. Lasseter will commence his new job later this month and will be based in Los Angeles.

In a statement Lasseter said: “I’m grateful to David and the Skydance team and know that I have been entrusted with an enormous responsibility. It is a distinct privilege that I will relish. I have spent the last year away from the industry in deep reflection, learning how my actions unintentionally made colleagues uncomfortable, which I deeply regret and apologize for. It has been humbling, but I believe it will make me a better leader.

Nothing - Opportunity - Roots - Skydance

“I want nothing more than the opportunity to return to my creative and entrepreneurial roots, to build and invent again. I join Skydance...
(Excerpt) Read more at: Screen
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