Disney banks on Pixar’s Elemental to get out of animation rut – Will it succeed?

Disney looks to get out of animation rut with Pixar’s Elemental

Disney has been struggling to attract audiences to its animated features in recent years. Pixar’s latest movie, Elemental, is seen as the company’s comeback attempt in the animation space. The romantic immigrant story weaves in anthropomorphic elements of nature and is expected to deliver domestic revenue of between $35 million and $45 million, according to box-office analysts.

The backdrop

Pixar’s run of success hit a roadblock with the underperforming film, Lightyear. For Disney as a company, this was compounded by a drop in revenue from animated films over the last few years. The studio is hoping Elemental will help it rebound.

The FIRE Movement

The idea of handling one’s finances well has long been a focus for savers. The concept of FIRE (Financial Independence, Retire Early) movement has taken this a step further. The movement, which advocates early retirement, has gained traction among a certain demographic. Many who subscribe to the movement quit their jobs while their savings remain strong.

FIRE programs and apps

Many apps and programs cater to the followers of the FIRE movement. Some even help set goals and calculate what a retiree needs in their bank account. The FIRE concept is focused on living frugally and saving as much as possible, along with finding ways to invest and grow one’s savings. Another key tenet is that the earlier one starts and the more one saves, the earlier one can retire.

Elemental: Pixar’s hopes

Pixar’s new release, Elemental, is a romantic story with a backdrop of environmental storytelling, helping to draw audiences in. There’s pressure on the studio to deliver after Lightyear’s stumble. Many hope that Elemental will help Disney prove that its success has not dulled over the years.

The story centers on two lovers

The story of Elemental is rooted in a love story. The two protagonists are figures who represent the elements: wind and fire. The romance between the two, separate in their nature but drawn together, is the story’s central theme. This is set against the backdrop of modern issues like immigration and environmentalism.

The film is animated but tries something new

Though this is an animated film, the studio wants to engage audiences on a different level, using nature as a central figure to tell its story. And while Elemental boasts technical wizardry from Pixar, the story’s originality is what sets it apart. This further speaks to the company’s aim of bolstering its animation portfolio.

Disney’s hope for a successful release

Disney is acutely aware of its need to bounce back. And the company is hoping that Elemental delivers. The movie’s unique storyline, combined with technical excellence from Pixar, makes the film an important bellwether for the company.

The need to prove Disney’s not lost its touch

Universal’s Illumination and DreamWorks Animation have dominated the animation space in recent years. The pressure on Disney is immense, with calls to show once again that the studio is a leader in the animation space. And while Elemental is important to Pixar and Disney, it is likewise critical to the company’s investors, who know that in this industry, conventional animated movies still hold potential for massive profits.

Disney going all-in on theater releases

For the last few years, Disney had turned to streaming platforms to bolster its revenue. The success of Elemental at the box office will determine whether the studio focuses more on cinema releases rather than streaming as it looks to increase profitability for its animation business.


With Pixar’s Elemental, Disney is looking forward to re-engaging with its audience through a tale that’s different from its earlier offerings. While the movie’s focus on environmental issues and romance is perhaps unlikely to find favor with every viewer, this new release is a breath of fresh air for those looking for something different from Disney. As much as the studio hopes that Elemental proves to be a financial winner, it’s the technical creativity and convention-defying storytelling that offer the most hope for Pixar and the leading voice in animation.


What is the concept behind the FIRE movement?

The FIRE movement, standing for ‘Financial Independence Retire Early’, supports saving for financial freedom and advocates early retirement.

Why is Disney banking on Elemental in the animation space?

Disney has struggled in recent years in the animation space with Pixar’s last movie, Lightyear, underperforming. Elemental is seen as the studio’s comeback attempt in animation.

What themes does the story of Elemental revolve around?

Elemental’s unique backdrop revolves around themes of immigration, environmentalism, and the love between the protagonists representing the elements of winds and fire.

How important is the success of Elemental to Disney?

The success of Elemental will prove critical to Disney as it seeks to prove it still has the magic touch when it comes to animation. It’s also critical to the studio’s investors as they seek to generate massive revenue from animation projects.

Will the success of Elemental impact Disney’s animation releases?

Should Elemental succeed at the box office, Disney may look to further bolster its animation portfolio through theater releases rather than streaming.