Walt Disney Animation Studios are expanding both in Burbank and also in Vancouver, Canada. The new studio in British Columbia will focus on long-form series and special projects for Disney+. This includes a musical series focused on Moana that will be at a theatrical level of quality.
Amir Nasrabadi, a veteran animator, will serve as the head of Walt Disney Animation Studios, Vancouver. He comes to this role after his role as EVP/General Manager at WildBrain Studios. Before that, he was VP/General Manager for Pixar Canada. On top of leadership roles at Illumination and Paramount Animation, he also was the finance lead for Walt Disney Animation Studios previously.
The addition of this Vancouver studio comes as Walt Disney Animation Studios in Burbank is also adding to its ranks that currently has over 900 employees. The studios in Burbank will continue to be the home of Disney’s animated feature films. It will also be producing the upcoming Baymax! and Zootopia+ shorter form series. The Burbank studios will also be where story development, storyboarding, and production design will be based for all projects. This includes those being worked on in Canada.
“Disney Animation is creating more original storytelling for Disney+, expanding into series for the first time in our history with Iwájú, Tiana, Moana, Baymax and Zootopia+,” says Jennifer Lee, Chief Creative Officer, Walt Disney Animation Studios. “As we continue to grow our original slate of projects, there are more creative, artistic and technological opportunities than at any previous time.”
Walt Disney Animation Studios President Clark Spencer said, “With Burbank and Vancouver both home to some of the world’s most talented artists and technicians, we believe the storytelling and visual quality created within each location will meet the incredibly high standards we set for ourselves and audiences have come to expect from Disney Animation.”
Nasrabadi shared, “I am so honored and excited to be joining the Disney family again. I can’t wait to dive in and collaborate with the talented teams at Disney Animation on a new slate of projects for Disney+ starting with Moana. I continue to be amazed at the high level of artistry and technical advancements coming out of the animation industry here in Vancouver and I am so proud to be a part of this community. This is really a dream come true for me.”
The studio in Canada is currently hiring. The Moana series will arrive on Disney+ in 2024 and is being produced by Oscar-nominated producer Osnat Shurer.
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