I despise sequels. I abhor them. I hate hate hate hate them. They are an insult! Imagine Leonardo painting Mona Lisa II, La Gioconda en Paris, or Shakespeare writing a sequel to Hamlet or Macbeth!
Of course I mean the sequels that are not better than the originals. Who needed a Matrix trilogy? The original was much better left alone. Who needed a Pirates of the Caribbean franchise? I didn’t even bother to watch Shrek the Third. The greedy, evil corporate-minded studio executive responsible for the last two Mummy films should be shot, ritually disemboweled, flayed, embalmed, and then prominently displayed on Hollywood Boulevard.
One of the worst offenders lately is Disney, with anemic movie sequels that go direct to DVD, sending cash into their wallets, but prostituting their brand, and the memory of their former glory. Disney is now a beautiful corpse. Pixar was their antiseptic, their last hope for resurrection.
Disney originally had the wisdom to grant Pixar creative independence, to save it from decay. But now it’s meddling, and will probably slaughter the proverbial goose that lays the golden eggs. You can see the upcoming lineup in the following article: Disney and Pixar’s Full Animated Line-Up Through 2012
Normally, a year or two separates each Pixar movie, resulting in a slow-cooked, delectable final product. But Disney is now planning to mass-produce and spit out a Pixar movie every year. They are also planning 3D re-releases of flagship Toy Story 1 and 2
Pixar has traditionally been opposed to sequels, but now, under their Disneyan overlords, its preparing to bring out another sequel to Toy Story, Toy Story 3, and, -gasp- Cars 2. Cars, in many opinions, was a weak movie for Pixar. In comparison, Brad Bird’s The Incredibles begs for a sequel. But, I bet the merchandise and DVD sales numbers surrounding Cars and Toy Story were too tempting for Disney’s strategists.
The story line behind next year’s Pixar release, Up, seems slightly bland. Newt, an upcoming 2011 movie about the last two remaining newts on earth having relationship trouble, seems to be an animal version of WALL·E.
Pixar is the only studio to capture my imagination in the past decade. Now it seems it was too good to last. Greed defeats art yet again. Pixar, please prove me wrong.
Image by Luis Ramirez, used with a Creative Commons license. Disney, Pixar, the Disney Logo, and the Pixar logo are trademarks of the Walt Disney Company.