Hey guys, 

I was reading Bob Iger's autobiography The Ride of a Lifetime the other night and noticed something interesting when he was talking about Pixar's upcoming slate before the Disney acquisition. Apparently, before Lee was working on Toy Story 3, he was working on a project involving dogs in Manhattan. 

I did some digging on what this was and found this interview. In the interview, he says the project that he was developing with Michael Ardnt, before the production of TS3. This interview was done before he retired and he says in it that the film will likely never be made now because of it inadvertently sharing a lot of elements in common with Illumination's The Secret Life of Pets. 

I'm curious TJ if you know anything about this. 
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Pixar Post - T.J.

I've tried to dig into this a little more, but haven't really found out anything outside of what was noted in the article.The first mention of this project was actually in a Steve Jobs book called Becoming Steve Jobs (from 2016), and it was a brief mention of the project, but until the slashfilm article, we hadn't known any more. It's kind of like Newt - it's one of those things that they don't really talk about when it's canceled. Either way, I would have loved to have known more. 

What's funny about Lee's project being similar to Secret Life of Pets is that Secret Life of Pets was essentially a rip-off of Toy Story's story-line, so the main similarity was the idea of dogs in apartments versus the story itself. That being said, that couldn't have been the only reason it was scrapped — the story had to have had other issues that weren't making it work.

For instance, A Bug's Life came out and had a similar undertone as Antz, but who thinks of Antz and more? If the story is good, working, and worth telling, Pixar will still tell it. So, although it may have had similarities, I have to believe that other elements weren't working and the similarities to the characters and location put it over the edge as an official reason to cancel.

It was the same story with Newt as well, where there were similarities to Rio, but they also said that the first act was the only part they got working — so, they ultimately canceled it.

Ultimately though, what does anyone else think? Should they have canceled it? Kept pushing through? If they did, the other odd thing to think about is that we wouldn't have gotten to see Coco. Crazy to think!
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I would've been pretty sad to not see Coco.
Also, on the topic of Newt, I was wondering if the film could be finished. One of the main reasons why the film was cancelled was because of Rio, which was made by Fox. And now Disney owns Fox, they could still technically make it. What are your thoughts TJ?
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Pixar Post - T.J.
I don't think Newt will be a thing - Ed Catmull's book dives into how the story just wasn't clicking and how it was an experiment that they didn't give them team any management oversight. He said it was a mistake and that it more than likely should have been canceled earlier. He said he regretted the experiment and didn't do it on any other projects. Plus, Gary Rydstrom was directing and I don't believe they'd do it without him. 

But, that's just what I think! ðŸ˜Ž Doesn't mean it's true - LOL!
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I think the film probably encountered issues and then was put on the backburner for Lee to make Toy Story 3. By the time Toy Story 3 was completed, I think Coco probably just interested him more than this idea.
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I don't feel like Pixar would make Newt with Gary Rydstrom. Love CREATIVITY INC by Ed Catmull! Fantastic read! 
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