THE WALT DISNEY ACQUISITION OF PIXAR
put the creative reins in the hands of John Lasseter, a former Disney animator who TIME profiled in 1998 as the "Wizard of Pixar
." In that profile Steve Jobs described Lasseter as "the closest thing we have to Walt Disney today." Some excerpts from our coverage of Disney and Pixar:
Censors have dealt sternly with Mickey Mouse. He and his associates do not drink, smoke or caper suggestively.... But censorship is only a form of public testimony that Mickey Mouse and other animated cartoons are an important and permanent element of international amusement. Sergei Eisenstein, famed Russian director, has said: 'They are America's most original contribution to culture....'
From Regulated Rodent
Feb. 16, 1931
In the last 25 years an estimated one billion people—more than a third of the world's population—have seen at least one of Disney's 657 films, most of which are dubbed in 14 languages. And one taste of a Disney picture makes millions of moviegoers cry for more. Disney takes pleasure—and enormous profit, of course —in gratifying this hunger.... Measured by his social impact, Walt Disney is one of the most influential men alive.
From Father Goose
Dec. 27, 1954
No ordinary high-tech start-up, Pixar stems from Filmmaker George Lucas' special-effects laboratory and boasts two of the best-known names in computer graphics, Edwin Catmull, 41, and Alvy Ray Smith, 42. Controlling interest in the company was purchased in February by Steven Jobs, the co-founder and former chairman of Apple Computer.
From The Love of Two Desk Lamps
Sep. 1, 1986
Not long ago, America's beloved Disney empire seemed destined for an unhappy ending. After an uninspired decade or more, Disney had fallen prey to takeover artists who wanted to break up the company like a rusty old carnival ride and sell its pieces to the highest bidders. But someone at Disney must have wished upon a star -- maybe all 30,000 employees did. After sliding within a cricket's whisker of defeat in 1984, Disney has come chirping back.
From Do You Believe In Magic?
By Stephen Koepp
Apr. 25, 1988
So who is this guy John Lasseter? At 41, with a chubby face and round wire-rimmed glasses, he looks like the overgrown kid he is at heart. He's just silly enough to ride a motorized hot dog to a Hollywood premiere. His offices at Pixar's animation studios in Point Richmond ... are host to a veritable convention of Buzz and Woody toys.
From The Wizard Of Pixar
By Cathy Booth
Dec. 14, 1998
Steve Jobs is micromanaging. He's sitting around a conference table at his Pixar Animation Studios with a gaggle of Pixar producers and Disney marketing types, poring over the color-coded, small-print, stunningly elaborate 'synergy timeline' for the upcoming Toy Story 2, which Pixar made and Disney will distribute.
From Steve's Two Jobs
By Michael Krantz
Oct. 18, 1999
It came as a shock last week when Pixar and Disney announced an end to their long and lucrative partnership. As a team, they had given moviegoers some of the greatest animated films in history, from Toy Story to last year's Finding Nemo, hauling in a total of $2.6 billion at the box office.
From But Who Gets The Kids?
By Desa Philadelphia, Jeffrey Ressner and Sonja Steptoe
Feb. 09, 2004
Eons ago, Walt Disney cornered this market with cartoon features that comforted parents and scared kids with the same implied admonition: Get home before dark. Pinocchio, Bambi and Dumbo, for all their craft and wonder, were essentially horror films that exploited the separation anxiety that children felt on their first day of schoolÉ.Three new summer movies aimed at kids also exile their heroes from familiar homes into perilous fantasy worlds. But they don't wag a warning finger; they beckon their littlest viewers to be independent, make friends, trust the dreamy inner child.
From For Children of All Ages
By Richard Corliss
Jun. 13, 2005
In a decade, CG [computer-generated] animation has achieved a commercial and artistic revolution. It has also achieved something else: it annihilated the Disney cartoon feature.... The transition from pencils to pixels hasn't been easy for the studio. Hand-drawn feature animation was an art form it created and then nurtured for six decades, from Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs in 1937 through the '94 smash The Lion King. Who could imagine that the empire would crumble? And why, when Disney had a distribution pact with Pixar, should the parent studio pursue CG animation?
From Can Mickey Find His Mojo?
By Richard Corliss
Sep. 26, 2005
But if you think the success of Hannah Montana is due solely to Cyrus' charm and talent, you've been watching too many Disney movies. Like her predecessors, Hillary Duff (Lizzie McGuire) and Raven Symone (That's So Raven), the twangy-voiced Cyrus was plucked from the ranks of minor actors by Disney and anointed to be its newest star.
From A Disney Star Is Born
By Jeanne McDowell
Nov. 30, 2006
Early this year, when Disney bought Pixar--basically paying about $7 billion for Lasseter's brain--he became boss of the grand old animation studio as well as the most revered modern one. His job: get both groups to make great movies. They couldn't have a model that's smarter, snazzier or more moving, kinetically and emotionally, than Lasseter's Cars, which opens June 9.
From Get Your Motor Running
By Richard Corliss
May. 22, 2006
There's a porous nature, too, to the company's power structure. Swapping ideas, stepping in, hanging out are at the root of what has to be called the Pixar culture. The studio has working methods more in common with the dotcom companies in nearby Silicon Valley than with the movie industry down in Los Angeles.
From Why Pixar Is Better
By Richard Corliss
Jun. 18, 2007
What Iger lacks in personal pizazz, however, he has made up for in strategic smarts. He's charting an ambitious course to recast the 84-year-old former cartoon studio as a creatively nimble, technologically savvy global-entertainment company.
From Building a Better Mouse
By Sonja Steptoe
Jun. 25, 2007