“I’ve had a magical and privileged experience working at Pixar for over two decades,” Anderson said in a statement. “The creativity, imagination, and innovation at Pixar is second to none. I’m truly grateful to have been a part of this historic journey, and hold excitement for my next chapter.”
“Coco,” which was named best animated feature by the Academy, is just one of several Pixar hits Anderson produced. Her other credits include “Toy Story 3,” “Cars,” “Monsters, Inc.,” and “A Bug’s Life.”
The “Coco” producer also earned a previous Academy Award nod for “Toy Story 3,” which in 2011 earned a best-picture nomination and won best animated feature.
“Darla has been a creative force in animation and a strong voice at Pixar for 25 years,” Walt Disney Co. CEO and chairman Bob Iger said in a statement. “She’s made an indelible mark on the industry as an Oscar-winning producer and a relentless champion for stories that reflect the diversity of the global audience. She takes my best wishes with her as she sets a course for her next adventure.”
Jim Morris, president of Pixar Animation Studios, also praised Anderson, saying in a statement that she is “not only a storied producer, but one of the true pioneers in the creation of computer animated feature films.”
He added: “From ‘A Bug’s Life’ to the sublime ‘Coco,’ Darla has produced a remarkable body of movies that have not only raised the bar for animation, but for cinema as a whole.”
Anderson leaves Pixar on a high note. Not only did “Coco” win two Oscars Sunday — the second for best original song — the film has outperformed expectations, making more than $740 million worldwide, becoming the best-selling movie in Mexico of all time ($58 million) and making nearly $200 million in China.
Anderson’s departure comes as John Lasseter, chief creative officer over Pixar and Disney Animation Studios, is on a leave of absence after admitting to “missteps” in the workplace that made some employees feel “disrespected or uncomfortable.”
News of Anderson’s departure was first reported by the Hollywood Reporter.