Oh, Floyd Norman. In the past, the Disney Legend has often posted Pixar-related news on Twitter that has not officially been announced by Disney and Pixar. In the past few days, we have heard more about the Monsters, Inc. 2 crew from Norman than we have over the past few years from Disney/Pixar. The film is one of two Pixar films due to be released in 2012, and according to the Disney animator it will be led by a new Pixar director.
UPDATE (4/1/11): It has been confirmed that Dan Scanlon will be directing the film.
Though Disney/Pixar has been mum on who will be directing the feature, we already knew that Pete Docter, director of the first film, would not be directing the sequel as he is hard at work on an original film for the studio. (Aside: Pixar Talk recently reported that Tom McCarthy, who collaborated on the story for Up, thinks that Docter’s new film is an “amazing” and “ambitious” idea.)
The Floyd Norman tweets that have fans riled up follow:
Don't be afraid. Pixar screens "Monsters2" at Disney this morning. Don't ask. I know nothing.
— Floyd Norman (@floydnorman) March 25, 2011
Nice to see a new director helming Pixar's "Monsters2." Very refreshing.
— Floyd Norman (@floydnorman) March 26, 2011
This is an exciting development because this means that Pixar is allowing a new director (who has not previously directed a feature film for the studio) to step in and bring a new vision to the franchise. The animation company is known for having new directors direct their short films to see what they can do. Teddy Newton, Peter Sohn, and Gary Rydstrom are a few examples of those who directed Pixar shorts.
The question that remains – who is directing Monsters, Inc. 2? While Bob Peterson, who served as a story supervisor for the first film may be an interesting choice, he was credited as co-director on Up. It may not necessarily count him out since he still has not played the role of a solo director. If it is not Peterson, it is really anybody’s guess as to who is filling the shoes of Pete Docter. With Monsters, Inc. 2 a little over one-and-a-half years away, we will likely find out soon enough.
Is it bizarre to be excited at the prospect of a different Pixar employee stepping up to sit in the director’s chair? While Toy Story 3 director Lee Unkrich co-directed several Pixar films in the past 10 years, when he was given complete ownership of the directorial role, he turned out one of the finest conclusions ever to a franchise. For this reason, we cannot wait to see who gets a stab at a Pixar feature film next.