Pete Docter says Pixar not interested in live-action remakes

Pete Docter says Pixar not interested in live-action remakes

Pete Docter, the Chief Creative Officer at Pixar Animation Studios, has made it clear that the studio has no interest in jumping on the live-action remake bandwagon. While Disney, Pixar’s parent company, has been busy turning its animated classics into live-action films, Pixar remains committed to its roots in animation. Docter emphasized this stance in a recent interview with Time, where he expressed his preference for creating original and unique films rather than remaking existing ones.

Docter’s comments come at a time when Disney has been heavily investing in live-action remakes of its animated hits. These remakes often feature computer-generated imagery designed to look like real-life creatures. However, Pixar has resisted this trend, focusing instead on creating new stories and expanding its existing animated universes. For instance, rather than producing a live-action version of “Monsters, Inc.,” Pixar opted to explore the backstory of Buzz Lightyear in “Lightyear.”

In the interview, Docter was asked about the possibility of a live-action remake of “Ratatouille,” a fan-favorite Pixar film. Despite a viral campaign advocating for actor Josh O’Connor to play the role of Linguini, Docter dismissed the idea. “No, and this might bite me in the butt for saying it, but it sort of bothers me,” he said. “I like making movies that are original and unique to themselves. To remake it, it’s not very interesting to me personally.”

Docter elaborated on the challenges of translating animated films into live-action. He pointed out that much of what makes Pixar films special is the unique rules of their animated worlds. “So much of what we create only works because of the rules of the [animated] world,” he explained. “If you have a human walk into a house that floats, your mind goes, ‘Wait a second. Hold on. Houses are super heavy. How are balloons lifting the house?’ But if you have a cartoon guy, and he stands there in the house, you go, ‘Okay, I’ll buy it.’ The worlds that we’ve built just don’t translate very easily.”

Docter’s remarks also come as Pixar prepares for the release of “Inside Out 2,” a sequel to the 2015 hit “Inside Out.” Directed by Kelsey Mann, the sequel features a star-studded voice cast, including Amy Poehler, Phyllis Smith, Lewis Black, Diane Lane, and Kyle MacLachlan. The film is set to hit theaters on June 14. Docter acknowledged the high stakes for the sequel, especially given the underperformance of Pixar’s recent releases like “Lightyear” and “Elemental.”

“If [Inside Out 2] doesn’t do well at the theater, I think it just means we’re going to have to think even more radically about how we run our business,” Docter said. He also touched on the ongoing struggle to balance the production of sequels with original content. “Part of our strategy is to try to balance our output with more sequels. It’s hard. Everybody says, ‘Why don’t they do more original stuff?’ And then when we do, people don’t see it because they’re not familiar with it,” he noted. “With sequels, people think, ‘Oh, I’ve seen that. I know that I like it.’ Sequels are very valuable that way.”

Docter admitted that it’s a challenge to create original content that resonates with audiences. “It’s sort of cynical to say people want to see stuff they know. But I think even with original stuff, that’s what we’re trying to do too. We’re trying to find something that people feel like, ‘Oh yeah, I’ve been through that. I understand that I recognize this as a life truth.’ And that’s been harder to do.”

Despite these challenges, Docter remains committed to the art of animation. He believes that the medium allows for a level of creativity and suspension of disbelief that live-action simply cannot match. “Animation frees the audience to suspend our disbelief faster because we aren’t looking at the world just like our own, we’re looking at an artist’s interpretation of it,” he said.

In a world where live-action remakes are becoming increasingly common, Pixar’s commitment to animation and original storytelling sets it apart. As Docter puts it, the studio is more interested in creating new worlds and characters than rehashing old ones. This dedication to originality is what has made Pixar a beloved name in the world of animation, and it’s a tradition that Docter intends to uphold.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top