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Disney Seeking Legal Action against Pixar Petroleum

Word came Monday that a Canadian oil company had made free use of the Pixar brand in dubbing its new division, Pixar Petroleum, Ltd. Disney, owner of all Pixar trademarks, stated this week "we intend to take the appropriate legal action."

The oil company apparently has a slew of Hollywood themed divisions and partners, including Paramount, Fox, Summit and MGM. Paramount Pictures is also now said to be exploring its legal options

The two companies' stance on the oil industry could not be more opposite, with Pixar chief John Lasseter having been very outspoken in his support of alternative fuel over big oil. In fact, Cars 2, their latest flick written and directed by Lasseter himself, villainizes big oil in its competition against alternative fuels.

While it's reassuring to hear that Disney is aggressively pursuing its rights, I can't help but doubt that they can lay any justifiable claim against the oil company, as a trademark is generally enforcable only within the immediate circle of its industry. Animated movies to oil is a bit of a stretch. Disney may have some grounds, however, if they can show that their brand will be impacted for the worse, which in a controversial industry like oil could be a viable argument.

La Luna Makes Oscar Short List

Pixar La Luna Short Film Logo The Academy announced today the short list for consideration in the Best Animated Short category. Pixar's La Luna made the cut along with 9 other films:

  • Dimanche/Sunday — National Film Board of Canada
  • The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore — Moonbot Studios
  • I Tawt I Taw a Puddy Tat — Warner Bros.
  • Luminaris — JPZtudio
  • Magic Piano — BreakThru Films
  • A Morning Stroll — Studio AKA
  • Paths of Hate — Platige Image
  • Specky Four-Eyes — Vivement Lundi!
  • Wild Life — National Film Board of Canada

The list will be pared down further still to 3–5 nominations which will be announced on the 24th of January along with nominations in all the other categories including Best Animated Feature for which Cars 2 is eligible.

Critics seem to be speaking pretty favorably about La Luna which will premier publicly next year with the release of Brave. It may be Pixar's best shot at a win this season.

John Lasseter First to Get Broccoli Award

John LasseterTonight John Lasseter will be the first recipient of the Albert R. Broccoli Britannia Award for Worldwide Contribution to Filmed Entertainment. Until now the award has been named the Britannia Award for Worldwide Contribution to Filmed Entertainment, and was renamed this year in honor of the legendary James Bond producer, Cubby Broccoli. Fittingly, John Lasseter directed Pixar's first spy movie, Cars 2, just this year. Lasseter joins Howard Stringer (Sony CEO), Kirk Douglas (Actor, Producer) and Ridley and Tony Scott (Directors) as recipients of the award.

The awards, hosted and presented by the Los Angeles branch of the British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) take place tonight, but will be broadcast on the TV Guide Network on December 4th.