Speaking with IGN Movies recently, Pixar creative chief John Lasseter reportedly confirmed what has long been speculated: that Blue Sky Studios' Rio was the reason for the cancellation of Newt.
"It's story was very similar to a movie that's out in theaters right now with a blue parrot. Oh my! Wow, we were like… great minds think alike, I guess. It was really pretty similar."
But more interesting is what he prefaced his comment with:
"We've put movies into development and some get further than others and then we feel like things just aren't quite ready we put them to the side and that's just been put on a shelf and we'll see where that goes in the future."
Doesn't that sound like we might get to see Newt someday?
Correction: A source at Pixar tells me that Lasseter was 'simply commenting on the similarity of elements of the plot', not in any way confirming that as the cause of Newt being shelved.