Looks like the clock has restarted for another of the many men exposed by the #MeToo movement. John Lasseter, the former creative chief of Pixar and Disney Animation who took a leave of absence in November 2017 amid accusations of sexual harassment, has already landed a new job at Skydance Animation as their new head. In a statement announcing the news, Skydance Media CEO David Ellison acknowledged the allegations saying that Lasseter had apparently paid his penance: “John has acknowledged and apologized for his mistakes and, during the past year away from the workplace, has endeavored to address and reform them.”
Several female employees at Pixar and Disney accused Lasseter of unwanted physical contact and encouraging a “sexist and misogynistic culture” at the company, which the women alleged was covered up by Disney executives. Lasseter took what was described as a “sabbatical” from the company and apologized in a memo to staff for making “missteps” in his behavior without elaborating further on what those missteps were; it was later announced that he would leave both Pixar and Disney by the end of 2018.
Time’s Up has issued a statement admonishing Skydance for hiring Lasseter despite the allegations, saying that the decision sets a precedent for welcoming predatory people back into Hollywood with open arms:
Skydance Media’s decision to hire John Lasseter as head of animation endorses and perpetuates a broken system that allows powerful men to act without consequence. At a moment when we should be uplifting the many talented voices who are consistently underrepresented, Skydance Media is providing another position of power, prominence and privilege to a man who has repeatedly been accused of sexual harassment in the workplace. People often ask when a man who has abused his power ‘gets’ to ‘come back.’ There is no simple answer. But here are a few first steps: 1) Demonstrate true remorse. 2) Work deeply to reform your behavior. 3) Deliver restitution to those you harmed. That’s the bare minimum. Hiring decisions have consequences. And offering a high-profile position to an abuser who has yet to do any of those things is condoning abuse.
Lasseter is set to begin his new post later this month.