Amid the fallout from the Walt Disney Company’s acquisition of 21st Century Fox, another senior executive is stepping down. Andrea Miloro announced her departure yesterday as one of Fox Animation’s two co-presidents in a memo to employees, according to The Hollywood Reporter. The other co-president, Robert Baird, is understood to be staying.

Andrea Miloro.
Andrea Miloro.

Together with Baird, Miloro had direct oversight over Fox’s flagship animation studio Blue Sky, the Connecticut-based creators of such franchises as Ice Age and Rio. She was also responsible for Fox Animation’s other initiatives, including a production partnership with British studio Locksmith. Before her promotion to the role in October 2017, she had worked in various capacities as a producer and executive for Blue Sky and Fox since 2010. Prior to that, she had been vice president at Sony Pictures Animation.

“While this is the end of my Blue Sky journey, I know that this studio will continue to surpass the very high expectations we set out for ourselves,” wrote Miloro in her memo, although she gave no reason for her departure. Ever since Disney’s purchase of Fox was announced in 2017, a cloud of uncertainty has hung over the latter’s animation ventures — Disney is already home to two hugely profitable animation studios, Disney Animation and Pixar, and some questioned whether it made strategic sense to run a third. In Disney’s round of executive layoffs in March, however, Miloro was confirmed in her position.

THR reports that Miloro had been subjected to a human resources inquiry over “unprofessional behavior,” and notes that Blue Sky’s forthcoming feature Spies in Disguise has been beset by budgetary issues. Disney has set the film’s release date just five days after its own expected blockbuster, Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker.

Here is Miloro’s memo in full:

I am writing today with some news that is difficult to share, but I wanted you to hear it from me: I will be leaving Blue Sky.

Two years ago we began the journey to elevate and evolve this vibrant studio. We embarked on a robust development slate, attracting new talent and pushing forward with technology to support the storytelling.

Blue Sky has always been a force for powerful family entertainment, and for the last 10 years I have loved being a part of the family. While this is the end of my Blue Sky journey, I know that this studio will continue to surpass the very high expectations we set out for ourselves.

Thank you for so many wonderful memories. I wish everyone the very best.

Disney has confirmed that it will release five animated/hybrid features that Fox was producing at the time of the acquisition. The future of other projects — including Foster, Blue Sky’s first feature to have a female director — is unknown at this point.

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