The Rise of Pixar Studios


Malieka Khan

This is an example of one of the movies that Pixar is known for and loved because of.

Malieka Khan, Photojournalist

Pixar Studios has gone through many errors over the years to become the animation studio they are today. In fact, Pixar had began as a group of animators trying to sell computers after being let go by the Walt Disney Animation Studios. After years of creating their own short animations on these computers, they would slowly lead into greater digital animation years later, pioneering a new way of creating films.

Pixar computers, known as Pixar Image Computers, has never sold well to a wide ratites of people and fell flat on its face. However, a Pixar employee John Lasseter began to create short animation scenes on these devices such as his most famous one, Luxo Jr., starring a lamp that is now seen at the beginning of every Pixar film created. Slowly, he began to collect a team of people who created these films with him that after a while raised a fan base. These films gave Lasseter attention in the commercial industry, having several companies request him to provide commercials for them.

During this time Steve Jobs, founder of Apple, had bought Disney and decided to invest in Pixar as well. Through this decision Pixar and Disney had become one in a company sense, as well as a companion to Lucasfilm which Steve Jobs had bought first. However this did cause some conflict between the two studios not only because they both had similar ideas and creations throughout their animations, but also John Lasseter had founded Pixar after being fired from Walt Disney Studios a few years beforehand. These differences however slowly began to morph away as Pixar had started to create its first original movie using a revolutionary and advance style of animation: computer animation.

Pixar had originally started as a computer company to sell digital computers to those who needed it and Steve Jobs had seen that as an amazing way to create animation making it natural for their first true movie to use these computers. This was called digital animation and had been the first done for the time leaving an immense amount of pressure on the creators of this film to release an amazing movie. If this film had done any less than amazing, movies that use digital animation today such as Inside Out, The Incredibles, and Monsters Inc. would not have been created. As well as the idea of many employees of Pixar being previous Walt Disney Studios workers that had been let go, the need for success and worth became greater.

In 1995, Pixar had wrapped up its making of Toy Story which luckily did amazing, racking $40 million on its opening weekend and winning Golden Globe awards for “Best Motion Picture” and “Best Original Song” for Randy Newman’s “You’ve Got A Friend In Me”.  Years after and after the completion of movies such as Monsters Inc, A Bug’s Life, and Finding Nemo Disney officially bought Pixar in 2006 for $7.4 billion dollars. Many see this as irony due to the fact that Pixar was founded on several fired employees for Walt Disney Studios, however that was an impactful and necessary step in animation. Without those groups of animators coming together and creating computers to enhance and pioneer digital animation, an entire new method of creating amazing films would be lost on the world. Thanks to this “Pixar had started to evolve into something that would inspire many people” as stated by Justin Lopez (10).

Ever since Toy Story’s success, digital animation has become much more common and Pixar is the major reason for this style of animation’s popularity. From employees at Walt Disney Studios to computer salesmen to digital animators the success of Pixar was an impactful evolution of not only animation but also films and the filming industry themselves.