Taking a film's side character and making them the center of the sequel is a risky proposition, as Pixar well knows after the disappointing, Mater-centric Cars 2. But Dory the blue tang fish from Finding Nemo remains by far the film's most enduring character, and the studio seemingly has no choice than to put her front and center in the planned sequel. So today they've officially announced Finding Dory, a sequel to the studio's second-most profitable film (behind Toy Story 3) set for a November 25, 2015 release.

Andrew Stanton, who directed Finding Nemo and the sterling WALL-E for Pixar before moving on to the disappointing John Carter, will be back to direct, with Albert Brooks returning to voice the ever-worried Marlin. The announcement promises appearance from Nemo and "The Tank Gang," but it's unclear if Weeds star Alexander Gould will return to voice an older Nemo, or if Allison Janney, Willem Dafoe, Brad Garrett and the other voice stars will return. (My money is on yes-- voice work is easy and Pixar is still the kind of company you want to be on board with).

Here's the rough plot description of Finding Dory, as outlined in the announcement:

Director and Pixar veteran Andrew Stanton takes audiences back to the extraordinary underwater world created in the original film. “There is no Dory without Ellen,” said Stanton. “She won the hearts of moviegoers all over the world—not to mention our team here at Pixar. One thing we couldn’t stop thinking about was why she was all alone in the ocean on the day she met Marlin. In ‘Finding Dory,’ she will be reunited with her loved ones, learning a few things about the meaning of family along the way.”

According to Stanton, “Finding Dory” takes place about a year after the first film, and features returning favorites Marlin, Nemo and the Tank Gang, among others. Set in part along the California coastline, the story also welcomes a host of new characters, including a few who will prove to be a very important part of Dory’s life.

We've been wrestling with some mixed feelings about a Finding Nemo sequel since it was first announced, and even with the Toy Story trilogy as shining example of how great sequels can be, Pixar still has us reeling from Cars 2. But if this summer's Monsters University turns out well, can it be a good omen for Finding Dory? Sound off in the poll below.

Is Finding Dory a good idea?

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