Mary Coleman, Locksmith Mary Coleman, Locksmith

Ron’s Gone Wrong producer Locksmith Animation has appointed former Pixar head of creative development Mary Coleman as its new chief creative officer.

Here are the details of the hire:

  • Mary Coleman has been named chief creative officer at London-based Locksmith Animation, starting in July. She joins Locksmith after more than two decades at Pixar Animation Studios where she was head of creative development.
  • She was hired by Pixar co-founder Ed Catmull in 1999 to help establish the company’s development department. During her time at Pixar, Coleman worked closely with Pixar directors from original concept through final draft. She has had a hand in Pixar films from Monsters, Inc. through Turning Red.
  • Coleman was the first woman to participate in Pixar’s “brain trust.” According to a release, her proudest achievements at the company include co-founding (with producer Nicole Grindle) The Story Artistas, Animation Artistas, and Art Artistas, three programs established to empower the studio’s female artists and pave the way for women directors and creative leaders.
  • “Having someone of Mary Coleman’s professional stature come on board Locksmith as chief creative officer is a milestone in our company’s journey,” said Locksmith CEO Natalie Fischer. “Her keen eye for material and her strong relationships with filmmakers were top of mind as we searched for the perfect CCO. We feel honored for her to join Locksmith Animation as we bolster our development slate, widen our artistic vision, and expand our appetite for success in the animation space.”
  • Coleman added: “Ultimately, what drew me most to Locksmith is that between Julie Lockhart’s two decades working with Aardman and Natalie Fischer having helped launch and then worked with Illumination for a decade and my two decades at Pixar, the three of us have helped to build wildly successful studios. Locksmith’s vision is ambitious and its slate is already full of potential. I’m thrilled that they have asked me to help them deliver on their promise of creating compelling entertainment for families around the world.”
  • Ron’s Gone Wrong was Locksmith’s first feature, and was released in October 2021. Earlier that year, the company announced that longtime Dreamworks vet Simon Otto will helm the studio’s second feature, That Christmas. Last month, Locksmith confirmed they were re-teaming with Ron’s Gone Wrong animation provider DNEG on the holiday film. The studio also recently optioned Marissa Meyer’s YA novel series The Lunar Chronicles.
  • Before Pixar, Coleman worked at San Francisco’s Magic Theater as associate artistic director. She holds a BA from Amherst and an MFA in theater directing from the University of California at San Diego.