For 15 years, the animation studio was the best on the planet. Then Disney bought it. Christopher Orr explores “How Pixar Lost Its Way” for The Atlantic.
A well-regarded Hollywood insider recently suggested that sequels can represent “a sort of creative bankruptcy.” He was discussing Pixar, the legendary animation studio, and its avowed distaste for cheap spin-offs. More pointedly, he argued that if Pixar were only to make sequels, it would “wither and die.” Now, all kinds of industry experts say all kinds of things. But it is surely relevant that these observations were made by Ed Catmull, the president of Pixar, in his best-selling 2014 business-leadership book.
Yet here comes Cars 3, rolling into a theater near you this month. You may recall that the original Cars, released back in 2006, was widely judged to be the studio’s worst film to date. Cars 2, which followed five years later, was panned as even worse. And if Cars 3 isn’t disheartening enough, two of the three Pixar films in line after it are also sequels: The Incredibles 2 and (say it isn’t so!) Toy Story 4. Read the article at The Atlantic.
Pixar, also referred to as Pixar Animation Studios, is an American computer animation film studio based in Emeryville, California that is a subsidiary of The Walt Disney Company. Pixar began in 1979 as the Graphics Group, part of the Lucasfilm computer division, before its spin-out as a corporation in 1986, with funding by Apple Inc. co-founder Steve Jobs, who became the majority shareholder.
Disney purchased Pixar in 2006 at a valuation of $7.4 billion, a transaction that resulted in Jobs becoming Disney’s largest single shareholder at the time. Pixar is best known for CGI-animated feature films created with RenderMan, Pixar’s own implementation of the industry-standard RenderMan image-rendering application programming interface, used to generate high-quality images. Read more at Wikipedia.