The Disney Films That Never Were: The Non-Pixar FINDING NEMO 2 - Warped Factor - Words in the Key of Geek.

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The Disney Films That Never Were: The Non-Pixar FINDING NEMO 2

Finding Marlin?

Arriving in 2003 to almost universal acclaim, Pixar's Finding Nemo became the highest-grossing animated film at the time of its release, and was the second-highest-grossing film of 2003, earning a total of $871 million worldwide by the end of its initial theatrical run. Finding Nemo would go on to become the best-selling DVD title of all time, with over 40 million copies sold. A sequel was all but guaranteed and, of course, arrived in the form of 2016s Finding Dory. However, an entirely different Finding Nemo 2 briefly went into production over a decade earlier, and it wasn't just a clown fish that went missing this time, rather Pixar themselves were entirely absent.

According to the terms of Pixar's initial seven-film deal with Disney, all characters created by Pixar for their cinematic releases were owned by Walt Disney Pictures. Furthermore, Disney retained the rights to make sequels to any Pixar film, though Pixar retained the right of first refusal to work on these sequels. At no point in time had there been an area of contention over this until in 2004 when negotiations between the two companies surrounding a new/extension to their agreement made a split appear likely.

Michael Eisner, Disney chairman at the time, put plans in motion to produce Toy Story 3, Monsters Inc. 2, and a sequel to Finding Nemo, all under the Disney banner rather than being developed by Pixar.

If Pixar thought that Eisner's actions were nothing more than a jab to Disney's negotiating tactics, which they certainly did appear to be at first, his move to also launch a new Disney studio called Circle 7 Animation with the sole intention of creating sequels to the Walt Disney Pictures owned Pixar properties was something of a sucker-punch.


Among the animation industry, Circle 7 quickly earned the nickname "Pixaren't", although time would show that they were never given the chance to prove their merit and if they could've rivaled the great animation company.

Circle 7's plans for Finding Nemo 2 would've picked up after the events of the first film and flipped that plot on its head somewhat. At the start of the film, Nemo would be reunited with his long lost twin brother Remy - Marlin is clearly not great at keeping an eye on his kids as Remy had been 'lost' before the events of Finding Nemo.

However, Marlin would be the one who found himself captured this time around, and he'd end up in an aquarium called Planet Blue. Nemo and Remy, along with their friend Dory, would then go and rescue him.

So why didn't it happen? Well, in January 2006 Disney bought Pixar in a deal that put Pixar chiefs Edwin Catmull and John Lasseter in charge of all Disney Animation. The following month, Circle 7 was shut down by Disney without having ever produced a single film.

Pixar went in an all new direction for Finding Nemo, although it does feature the Marine Life Institute aquarium, which isn't a million miles away from the Planet Blue idea. Although plenty of concept art and rough-cut video scenes for Circle 7's other projects have emerged online, no concept art has ever been released for Finding Nemo 2 (although a script was briefly uploaded to the official Raindance Film Fectival website in 2018) so we can only imagine what adventures Nemo, Dory, Remy and Marlin would've had if Finding Nemo 2 had continued production in 2006.

Previous Disney films that never were articles
The 1930s & 40s Live Action Alice In Wonderland 
The 1943 Sequel To Bambi
Where The Wild Things Are
Who Framed Roger Rabbit Two
Dumbo II
The Search For Mickey Mouse
The Original Non-Pixar Toy Story 3
Rapunzel Unbraided
Monsters, Inc. 2: Lost In Scaradise
Yellow Submarine
The Graveyard Book

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