Pixar's "The Good Dinosaur" is due out in theaters in nine months, but that apparently hasn't stopped Pixar chief John Lasseter from tinkering under the film's hood. According to a report from Disney blog Blue Sky Disney, "Good Dinosaur" director Bob Peterson has been removed from the project. No replacement has been set, but Blue Sky Disney posits that the studio will push to have someone in place soon so that the film can hit its May 30, 2014 release date on time.
Or maybe there already is someone in place: At the Disney D23 fan expo in Anaheim, Calif. earlier in August, Pixar animator and voice actor Peter Sohn was announced as a co-director of "The Good Dinosaur"; Peterson, it should be noted, was not in attendance at D23: According to Slashfilm, Peterson wasn't mentioned once during the D23 event.
Not that last-minute shuffles are something new to Pixar. The studio utilizes a collaborative creative effort to get films onto the screen, a process detailed in a lengthy 2011 New Yorker piece on director Andrew Stanton, who made "Finding Nemo" for the studio:
At most studios, filmmakers try to keep the execs at bay, but at Pixar the Braintrust of six to twelve story gurus is intimately involved in revising every movie -- “plussing” it, in Pixar’s term.
“Toy Story 2,” “Ratatouille,” “Cars 2,” and the forthcoming “Brave” were all going so badly, midway through, that their directors had to be replaced.
For what it's worth, both "Ratatouille" and "Brave" won Best Animated Feature at the Academy Awards (the category did not exist when "Toy Story 2" was released), and "Cars 2" earned $559 million at the global box office.
HuffPost Entertainment contacted Pixar for comment on the Peterson rumor; this post will be updated with their response.
For more on what might happen with "The Good Dinosaur," head to Blue Sky Disney.