Hey, brother. J, Every now and then, it seems like two different animation studios seem to have the same idea, namely Pixar and Dreamworks. Whether it’s Shrek and Monsters Inc, Finding Nemo and Shark Tale, Flushed Away and Ratatouille, they always come out within 12 months of one another and always seem to have the same premise. It’s really almost as if someone assigned both studios the same concept and they just gave it their own spin. Now of course this is not the case. Sometimes it’s merely coincidence. Sometimes it’s the studio’s trying to take advantage of popular trends, but never has it been more in contention than when it was between: Antz and A Bug’s Life [THEME MUSIC] The story of a young bumbling ant that tries to impress the princess, and later save the colony is the premise of two movies that came out within a month of each other in 1998. A Bug’s Life from Pixar and Antz from Dreamworks At the time, Toy Story would be the first fully computer animated film, with Antz and A Bug’s Life to follow second and third respectively. Which means at one point in time, 66% of all feature-length computer-animated films were about the same thing, and that thing was ants. Except I’m actually team A Bug’s Life, so really So, what happened? Our story begins with a man named Jeff Katzenberg. Katzenberg would work at Walt Disney studios from 1984-1994, where he actually turned the entire animation department around and in turn the entire animation industry, and if you can believe it, during this time Disney was actually ranked last amongst all major studios at the box office. Under Katzenberg, Disney began to turn out such classics as Beauty and the Beast, The Little Mermaid, Lion King and Aladdin, amongst many others, and he began to foster the relationship between Disney and Pixar, so in 1994 when the position of president became available at Disney Animation, Katzenberg kinda thought he was a shoo-in, but Disney CEO Michael Eisner denied Katzenberg the position, and as a result he left and went on to found Dreamworks SKG I mentioned Pixar earlier, but it’s important to remember that at this point in time, Pixar had not released a feature film yet. It wouldn’t be until the next year in 1995 that Toy Story would be released in November John Lasseter, the chief creative officer at Pixar, was extremely excited about the project and had high hopes for Toy Story. So high, that he was telling his animation friends in the industry, including Katzenberg, to get ready. Because if toy story took off the way that he thought it might, it would be just like space movies after Star Wars came out for the computer animation industry. Lasseter’s enthusiasm already had Pixar working on a new feature film: A Bug’s Life in 1995 before the release of Toy Story A new movie concept that he happily shared with Katzenberg, who he saw as a friend and a useful sounding board for creative ideas, even though he no longer had a position with Disney. That conversation would happen in 1995, one month before the release of Toy Story. Well imagine his shock when after Toy Story is released and is a huge success, that Lassater hears through the grapevine that Dreamworks is working on a project on none other than Ants with a Z Naturally and quite fairly if you asked me, Lasseter assumed that Katzenberg had stolen their idea. Lasseter even said Lasseter even called Katzenberg to confirm that the rumor was true that they were making a movie about ants, which he ultimately admitted to but denied the claim that he had stolen their idea. Katzenberg claiming that the idea came from a pitch from a development director long before. and this is where it gets good because, plot twist, Katzenberg was blatantly ripping the concept off, but also was the victim of a conspiracy, but not with John Lasseter or Pixar. Instead, with Disney, more specifically CEO Michael Eisner The same CEO that didn’t promote him Lasseter in A Bug’s Life were kind of just becoming collateral damage. So here’s what happened, after Katzenberg left Disney, Eisner refused to pay him his contracted bonus, then after he founded Dreamworks, Eisner scheduled A Bug’s Life to premiere the same weekend as Dreamworks first animated feature, The Prince of Egypt, A film that was set to release in December of ’98. Here’s where things get much less subtle. Katzenberg then decides to counter by accelerating the development of Antz so that it would beat A Bug’s Life to box-office. Unconfirmed rumors speculating that Katzenberg even offered rich financial incentives to ensure that Antz was ready by October of ’98, when it was originally not scheduled to come out until spring of ’99, well after A Bug’s Life. Ultimately, Disney would push the release date of A Bug’s Life up one month from December to November, getting it out just 43 days after the release of Antz, and at that point, it was really up to the public to decide, and honestly, the winner, not super clear. At the box-office, A Bug’s Life destroyed Antz, actually doubling their revenue. Coming in at $363 Million versus $171 million, but on Rotten Tomatoes, from the critics, Antz actually edges A Bug’s Life out, but only by a slim margin on the other hand, Rotten Tomatoes, public score gives a bug’s life the win by quite a wide margin For my question of the day, have you seen both movies and which do you prefer? Be sure to leave your thoughts in the towel section down below. If you’d like to read up more about the feud between the two studios be sure to check out the links in the description below. Thanks for watching this video be sure to like and subscribe to the channel, if you haven’t already. If you’d like to see some more behind the scenes Pixar production action, you can click right here to figure out why the movie Newt was canceled or click right here to check out the Pixar formula. J, that is everything that I’ve got for you today, man. I will see you on Tuesday.