Pixar’s Brad Bird to direct animated film ‘Ray Gunn’ for Skydance Animation

Brad Bird, who has arguably done his best work at Pixar, is going to make an animated movie for someone else. The Oscar-winning director, who serves as part of Pixar’s Brain Trust, will make Ray Gunn for Skydance Animation.

Bird previously directed 2007’s Ratatouille, 2004’s The Incredibles, and its 2018 sequel Incredibles 2 for Pixar. Outside of Pixar, Bird also directed 2015’s Tomorrowland, 2011’s Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol, and 1999’s The Iron Giant. The Incredibles and Ratatouille later went on to win the Academy Award for Best Animated Feature. Bird also co-wrote the film’s screenplay with Matthew Robbins, and will be a producer. Robbins’ previous work includes 2015’s Crimson Peak (directed by Guillermo del Torro), 2013’s Vijay and I (directed by Sam Garbarski), and 2011’s 7 Khoon Maaf.

Ray Gunn is a passion project of Bird’s that he’s been trying to make for nearly 30 years. Originally created alongside Matthew Robbins, it’s reportedly the story of the last human private detective, Raymund Gunn, in a future world full of both humans and aliens. He’s hired to investigate the pop singer Venus Envy to find out if she’s cheating on her husband. However, Gunn finds out that she’s being set up by her husband to make it look like she killed her body double.

Skydance Animation’s John Lasseter, David Ellison, and Dana Goldberg will be producers for the film. Before joining Skydance in 2019, Lasseter was the chief creative officer for Pixar (as well as Walt Disney Animation Studios) from 2006-2018. “We are thrilled to partner with Brad to finally bring his vision of Ray Gunn to the screen,” said Lasseter and Holly Edwards (Skydance Animation president). “From its immersive world to its rich characters, we can’t wait to explore this story and to create a one-of-a-kind animated experience for audiences around the world.”

“From his work on The Iron Giant to The Incredibles films and the work we did together on Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol, Brad is one of the greatest filmmakers working in the industry today,” said Skydance CEO David Ellison. “As a lifelong fan of animation, it is incredibly rewarding to be re-teaming with him to create this bold new world and we’re excited to get started.”

No official release date has been announced for Ray Gunn. Skydance Animation’s first animated feature film Luck will debut on 5 August on Apple TV+.