Pixar: a System That Works

Topics: The Walt Disney Company, Walt Disney, Pixar Pages: 3 (1074 words) Published: October 11, 2011
When one thinks of the company Pixar, they automatically think Disney. However, this has not always been the case. Pixar was started in 1986 when Steve Jobs purchased the computer graphics department of Lucasfilms, Ltd, and renamed it Pixar. “On November 22, 1995, Pixar released its first feature film, Disney•Pixar's Toy Story” (Pixar.com). Since then, the company has evolved into one of the largest animation studios in the world, won 20 Oscars, and created “films that have reinvented the art of animation, captured the imagination of audiences around the world, and grossed more than $3 Million at the box office” (Taylor and LaBarre 226). Other films from the company include Monsters Inc., WALL-E, A Bug’s Life, and The Incredibles. Until recently, the company has worked independently from Disney, but “[o]n January 24, 2006, Pixar entered into an agreement with The Walt Disney Company to merge the two companies… Pixar is now a wholly-owned subsidiary of The Walt Disney Company” (Pixar.com). This transformation from small computer graphics department to Oscar award winning animation studio could not have been achieved without Pixar’s emphasis on teamwork, its ability to motivate and involve all employees, and the creative culture fostered throughout the entire company.

Pixar has not made this transformation by accident. The company understands how important teamwork is for survival. “‘It’s at the heart of our model,’ Randy Nelson [dean of Pixar University and company executive] says, ‘giving people opportunities to fail together and recover from mistakes together’” (B. Taylor). That is why Pixar excels in the industry of film making, it “makes films differently—and in the process, defies many familiar, and dysfunctional, industry conventions” (B. Taylor). Instead of treating their films like most production companies do, Pixar draws all of its talent from within the group of salaried employees, creating “a tight-knit company of long-term collaborators...
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