Jennifer Lee, head of Walt Disney Animation Studios, has announced four directors who are set to create original content for the studio. Lee has said that she hopes to increase the diversity and inclusion at the studio.
The filmmakers are:
- Carlos Lopez Estrada – Estrada’s debut live-action film was Blindspotting, for which he received a Directors Guild award for first-time directing, plus was named among Variety’s 10 Directors to Watch. Recently Estrada directed an episode of Legion for FX.
- Suzi Yoonessi – Yoonessi is most well know for directing the Duplass brothers’ Unlovable. She also directed Daphne & Velma, plus short films for Funny or Die.
- Josie Trinidad – Trinidad joined Disney Animation in 2004 and oversaw the story team on Ralph Breaks the Internet and Zootopia. She also worked on Tangled and Princess and the Frog.
- Marc Smith – Smith was the story director for the upcoming Frozen 2. He began at Disney in 1993 as an intern, eventually working on Treasure Planet, Tangled, Frozen, Big Hero 6, and Zootopia.
Lee said of the appointments:
We aim to have Walt Disney Animation Studios serve as the premiere home for filmmakers interested in telling engaging stories within the limitless animation medium.
Carlos and Suzi are two incredible, inventive filmmakers who have both received acclaim for their work. Josie and Marc, master, lead story artists, have been instrumental in shaping such films as Zootopia and Frozen 2. We are so thrilled to have these four talented artists join our 96-year-old studio as directors and help us build the stories of our future — adventures in completely original worlds, stories from around the globe, and the next generation of musicals.