Keep Moving Forward

As I’ve said before, if you’re not reading Jeff Pepper’s 2719 Hyperion, then you’re missing out on some great analysis of the Walt Disney Company, past and present. Today Jeff has an important takeaway from the latest Disney Animated film, Meet The Robinsons.

While other Disney pundits are deep in Monday morning quarterbacking, [ed. guilty] analyzing box office receipts and comparing grosses, the relative financial success (or perceived failure) of Meet the Robinsons is really quite secondary to the message that is being communicated in those final frames of the film.

Okay Jeff, so why did I sit through 2 hours of Movie Commercials and Feature film?

Walt Disney Feature Animation, and hopefully and more importantly the entire Walt Disney Company, are returning to their creative roots.

“Around here, however, we don’t
look backwards for very long. We keep moving forward, opening up new
doors and doing new things… and curiosity keeps leading us down new
paths.” – Walt Disney

For those words to emerge from a company that has been largely deemed creatively stagnant and bottom-line driven for the last ten years, it represents more than a quaint epilogue to an animated feature. I believe Ed Catmull, John Lasseter and Bob Iger are clearly telling us something. That the fundamental principles of the Disney company are still alive and well and have not been forgotten.

I am, like most Disney fans I know, eternally optimistic that the company will return to its creative roots. I hope Jeff is right. The Dreamworks and similar animation studios of the world will eventually figure ‘it’ out. Lasseter, Iger, et al. should hear the ghosts of the collective feet of all those animators Disney let go and burned bridges with over the last 18 years. They’re getting closer. (Read)