Hello everyone. I know it’s been a while since I’ve posted content (there are still many that are in the works), and my schooling has slowed things down. With what has been going on in Hollywood for the last few months, a lot of perspective has been given to the normal Joes and Janes like us in regards to how we see people in the public eye. The controversy has officially hit the animation industry and fanbase in a large way a few days ago. If any of you do not know what I am talking about, news broke out a few days ago that John Lasseter is taking a “leave of absence” for 6 months due to allegations of inappropriate contact with a female worker. Said worker is still credited as a writer on Toy Story 4, but this worker left the project a while ago, under “creative differences”. This was apparently not an isolated incident, and has been a repeated occurrence, ranging from hugs, kisses, to commentary.
A lot of people is taking the news really hard, to the point where it is like a stab in the heart. I get this, especially because Pixar/Disney (and Lasseter especially) has spent decades creating this image out of being all about love, creativity, support, and being a homely person that supports families, so on and so forth. Several generations have been influenced by the work of this man, and the company he put so much passion into over the last 4 decades, so this is a tough blow. People now kind of see this entire image of the company and Lasseter himself as a creepy facade, and the realization of that is shattering, especially since so many people saw him as a heavenly figure.
To some, the signs of shady behaviour was there, especially with the scandal that took place a few years ago. This consisted of several high-level studios conning their animators out of their rightful money with the wage scandal. That news kind of put a lot of these figureheads in a shady and disturbing light, since it was one of the first instances where they were exposed for some of their actions. It definitely gave me some perspective that there was another side to the industry that we willingly choose to ignore.
My overall point is that we should have never looked at these people as heroes, gods, warriors, idols, deities, icons, so on and so forth. Sure, they have created some brilliant and exquisite works that have been ingrained in popular culture. A lot of us have created blissful memories due to these pop culture tools/outlets, but we need to remember that there are people that work behind them, and should be judged just like everyone else. Blowing stuff off just because these executives and figureheads are famous should NOT excuse what they did. At the end of the day, they are citizens that have to follow laws, and will die like everyone else. This is partially why the culture in relation to assault continues, and people refuse to speak out. I am glad that people are now speaking out, but since everyone has more courage, a lot of fans in several different groupings are being hit hard with some of these accusations.
I know a lot of people still support and like the company, and they have that right to. There are people that work for the company who are brilliant citizens, and are just supporting their families, and those people do not deserve to be punished for some executive taking advantage of their power. But at the same time, people have the right to not support them because the figurehead has shown that their actions are completely contradictory to the image they built for decades.
There is going to be many different types of emotions, responses, and reactions to this manner, and all of it is fair. This seriously has me all over the place too, since this took a hit on one of the most important aspects of my life too. Just remember to be open with one another, and try not to judge one another to the point that we’re arguing with one another. All of this is about perspective, and how we can grow as a community together, as well as hoping Hollywood changes for the better. Serious discussions like always tends to be controversial due to the severity of it, and people start pointing at one another, claiming that they are horrible people, and support whatever.
If you already couldn’t tell, I can barely muster all of the words I want to muster, but this is important to me to get it all out. Whether it is true or not, it does broadcast and emphasize a flaw in the industry of Hollywood. People tend to separate animation from Hollywood for some reason, but it is a part of Hollywood, and should be critiqued just as equally. Just remember that we should not be taking our anger of the news on one another, though this conversation should be had with all of us. Hopefully justice is served, and a healthier atmosphere in these studios and the fandom is fostered.