Disney Animation, ‘Paperman’ Director Part Ways

John Kahrs has left the studio in ‘amicable’ split

John Kahrs, director of the black-and-white animated short “Paperman” that won an Academy Award in 2012, has left Walt Disney Animation Studios.

In a statement to TheWrap, Kahrs said he will develop his own projects elsewhere, but said that the split was “amicable.”

Kahrs made a big splash with “Paperman,” an animated short that debuted with “Wreck-It Ralph.” The film combined hand drawings and computer animation to tell the romantic story of a man and a woman who are brought together by a paper airplane.

“I will miss working with them, and feel lucky to have played a part in the revitalization of the studio,” said Kahrs, whose last day was Friday. “They have an abundance of projects; an incredible development slate, but I’ve decided to develop my own projects and pursue directing elsewhere.”

“It was very amicable — they were very gracious about that — and I believe we all left the door open,” he added.

Disney also indicated it had no bad feelings about Kahrs exit.

“John is an incredibly talented filmmaker and artist and all of us here at Walt Disney Animation Studios are proud of his vision for the stunning and innovative ‘Paperman,’” a studio spokesman said in a statement to TheWrap. “We wish him the best in his future endeavors.”

His departure comes on the heels of Bob Peterson’s exit last week from the director’s chair of Pixar’s 2014 release “The Good Dinosaur.” Unlike Kahrs, Peterson will remain at the studio.