Jennifer Lee
Ricky Middlesworth/Disney
United States
2021

Walt Disney Animation Studios

Jennifer
Lee

Chief Creative Officer

When Lee took charge of Walt Disney Animation Studios in 2019, she pledged to bring diversity to its workforce and its storytelling, and that ambition has been realized with recent features such as “Raya and the Last Dragon,” with a Latino co-director (Carlos López Estrada) and a mostly Asian voice cast, and “Encanto,” about a Colombian girl who’s the only one in her family without magical powers. As chief creative officer for her division, she oversees all of its films, series, shorts and related content, including the Disney+ projects “Baymax,” “Zootopia+” and “Iwáju.” In 2022, she gets a new studio in Vancouver dedicated to producing long-form series, beginning with “Moana,” while the creatives back in Burbank will focus on features and shortform.

Career

  • WRECK-IT RALPH
  • FROZEN
  • FROZEN II

Education

  • University of New Hampshire (NH, USA)
  • Columbia University (NY, USA)

Variety Honors

  • 2018 Variety500 Honoree
  • 2019 Variety500 Honoree
  • 2020 Variety500 Honoree
  • 10 Screenwriters to Watch
  • Women's Impact
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News from Variety

From Helming 'Frozen' to Uplifting New Voices, Jennifer Lee Reflects on Her Disney Journey

From Helming 'Frozen' to Uplifting New Voices, Jennifer Lee Reflects on Her Disney Journey

It’s been almost a decade since Jennifer Lee became the first woman to helm a Walt Disney Animation Studios feature film, 2013’s “Frozen.” She partnered with Chris Buck, and the duo co-directed and co-wrote what would become one of Disney’s all-time biggest hits. The film won an Oscar for animated feature.In 2018, Lee was upped to chief creative officer and sought to find new voices. She would help burst open the door for other female directors at the studio.This month,...

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