s
s
Sections
Sections
Subscribe
You've read 3 of 10 free articles this month.
Get unlimited access to SonomaNews.com, the Sonoma Index-Tribune eEdition and our mobile app for just $5.25 per month!
Already a subscriber?
You've read 6 of 10 free articles this month.
Get unlimited access to SonomaNews.com, the Sonoma Index-Tribune eEdition and our mobile app for just $5.25 per month!
Already a subscriber?
You've read all of your free articles this month.
Continue reading with unlimited access to SonomaNews.com, the Sonoma Index-Tribune eEdition and our mobile app for just $5.25 per month!
Already a subscriber?
We've got a special deal for readers like you.
Get unlimited access to SonomaNews.com, the Sonoma Index-Tribune eEdition and our mobile app for just $5.25 per month, and support community journalism!
Already a subscriber?
Thanks for reading! Why not subscribe?
Get unlimited access to SonomaNews.com, the Sonoma Index-Tribune eEdition and our mobile app for just $5.25 per month, and support community journalism!
Already a subscriber?
Want to keep reading? Subscribe today!
For just $5.25 per month, you can keep reading SonomaNews.com, the Sonoma Index-Tribune eEdition and our mobile, and support community journalism!
Already a subscriber?

John Lasseter cancels Dec. 4 appearance in Sonoma following Hollywood Reporter story

X

The "Follow This Story" feature will notify you when any articles related to this story are posted.

When you follow a story, the next time a related article is published — it could be days, weeks or months — you'll receive an email informing you of the update.

If you no longer want to follow a story, click the "Unfollow" link on that story. There's also an "Unfollow" link in every email notification we send you.

This tool is available only to subscribers; please make sure you're logged in if you want to follow a story.

X

Please note: This feature is available only to subscribers; make sure you're logged in if you want to follow a story.

John Lasseter, scheduled to be the guest at the seventh Sonoma Speakers Series discussion on Dec. 4 at Hanna Boys Center, has withdrawn from the event, according to John McChesney.

The withdrawal was a blow to the Sonoma Speakers Series, which had announced its first-ever sold-out event two weeks in advance of Lasseter’s scheduled appearance.

McChesney said they were hoping Pixar could produce a replacement for the animation legend, who has taken a six-month “leave of absence” from Disney/Pixar following a Nov. 21 article in the Hollywood Reporter detailing inappropriate conduct.

MChesney confirmed on Friday, Nov. 24, that the event had been cancelled and all tickets would be refunded next week.

Lasseter, who lives in Glen Ellen with his wife Nancy on an estate that escaped major damage in the Nuns Fire last month, has been a frequent supporter of film in the Sonoma Valley since 1995, when he premiered “Toy Story” at the Sebastiani Theatre. Among his other films are “A Bug’s Life” (1998), “Finding Nemo” (2003), “Ratatouille” (2007), and the “Cars” series that began in 2006.

He is a two-time Oscar winner and six-time nominee. He was employed briefly by Disney Studios in the late 1970s, but after he was fired formed a partnership with Lucasfilm that eventually led to the formation of Pixar Graphics Group in 1984, under majority shareholder Steve Jobs.

For almost 20 years Pixar was the main competitor to Disney Studio’s animation department, but in 2006 Disney purchased Pixar outright, naming Lasseter creative director of the new Walt Disney Animation Studios.

Pixar’s newest film – “Coco,” a Dia de Muertos computer animation that’s already hugely popular in Mexico – opens this weekend in Sonoma at the Sebastiani Theatre.

The Sebastiani held a benefit screening of the original “Toy Story” on its 20th anniversary in December, 2015.

More recently, Lasseter drove the pace car to kick off the Toyota/Save Mart 350 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup race at Sonoma Raceway on Sunday, June 25.

Earlier this month, he was honored with the Diane Disney Miller Lifetime Achievement Award in a ceremony at the Walt Disney Family Museum in San Francisco.

But the accolades have slowed in recent days, as reports of Lasseter’s behavior have surfaced in the industry press from what the Hollywood Reporter termed “Disney/Pixar insiders.” These included statements that Lasseter was known for “grabbing, kissing, making comments about physical attributes” in situations that were not always purely social, as at parties.

“Sources say some women at Pixar knew to turn their heads quickly when encountering him to avoid his kisses,” the Hollywood Reporter article stated. “Some used a move they called ‘the Lasseter’ to prevent their boss from putting his hands on their legs.”

On Tuesday, announcing his six-month “sabbatical” from Walt Disney Animation and Pixar, Lasseter issued a statement that read in part, “I’ve recently had a number of difficult conversations that have been very painful for me. It’s never easy to face your missteps, but it’s the only way to learn from them. As a result, I’ve been giving a lot of thought to the leader I am today compared to the mentor, advocate and champion I want to be. It’s been brought to my attention that I have made some of you feel disrespected or uncomfortable. That was never my intent.”