There's a lot of reaction from people in Hollywood about Dick Cook suddenly stepping down from heading the Mouse's film division...
Key among these is Johnny Depp, who has developed a bond over the last half decade. It's not surprising, Cook's developed that kind of trust from many people in the industry. In front or behind the camera, Walt Disney Studios chairman was liked by all and many are still shocked as to what happened. Depp did a phone interview with the Los Angeles Times Friday about the events and his relationship with Cook:
"shocked and very sad, it seems like the whole town is shocked, I didn't see this coming. There was no reason to see this coming."And his comment about his feelings for a new "Pirates of the Caribbean" film shows he's temporarily a little less enthused:
"the sweetest man on the planet and such a gent."
"He is the utmost gentleman, so he made the call himself. He said, 'I'd like you to hear it from me before you hear it from someone else or read it,' He said today was my last day. He didn't give me a reason."
"He's instantly trustworthy. And you generally don't meet people at the studios you trust, he's a rare beast."
"There's a fissure, a crack in my enthusiasm at the moment, it was all born in that office."And he still believes that he'll work with/for Cook again, just not at Disney:
"He will be somewhere and I will always look forward to working with him. I consider Dick a friend inside an insane system. He's someone I understand and I think he understands me."And he's not the only one, big producer Scott Rudin, whose production company has a first-look deal with Disney Studios:
"I'm completely shocked - as is literally everybody I've spoken to,"According to Nikki Finke of Dateline Hollywood, Spielberg is supposedly devastated that Dick Cook's gone. Cook was a major reason why Spielberg and Stacey Snider decided to go with Disney on DreamWorks new distribution deal. "Steven worships Dick Cook," a DreamWorks insider told Finke.
He was instrumental in working out this new deal with Guillermo del Toro and his new label at Disney. He seems to know what the company is lacking and has tried to attract talent that seems to have their finger on the pulse of what audiences like.
Cook also is supposedly on very friendly terms with Lasseter ever since the Pixar deal went through, I wonder what John thinks of all this? Having Cook by his side was a very reassuring thing for Lasseter and Ed Catmull. How will the new leader deal with Lasseter? Granted, John Lasseter is a big fish, and he pretty much gets his way, but it helps having those around you that you know you can trust. Cook was one of those guys, but we don't know if the next guy/gal will be.
You can see these people have a great deal of loyalty to Dick Cook, as do so many countless others. Relationships in Hollywood, true relationships, not the plastic kind, are hard to come by. Walt Disney Studios had something going for it with a leader that was so trusted. It'll be a very difficult challenge for Iger to find someone with the cache of credibility Cook had.
Here's crossing our fingers and wishing for the best for both Disney and Cook...