John Lasseter, animator, screenwriter, film director, and producer, was always drawn toward animation. At the age of five, he won a $15 grocery store drawing contest. Enthralled by Disney animation during his childhood, he enrolled in the inaugural Character Animation Class at the California Institute of Arts. After earning his BFA in 1979, Lasseter worked as a Disney animator. He transferred to Lucasfilm and worked with groundbreaking computer-generated imagery (CGI). Lucasfilms became Pixar and Lasseter became Pixar’s executive director.
John Lasseter’s first major success was Luxor, Jr. (1986), a short film that he directed, wrote, and animated. The two-minute vignette of a small desk lamp entertaining a larger desk lamp became the first 3D computer-animated film nominated for an Academy Award. Lasseter later produced Tin Toy (1988), a short film about a one-man tin band and his attempts to escape from an infant. Tin Toy became the first CGI film to win an Academy Award for Best Animated Short. Lasseter’s directorial debut was Toy Story (1995), a full-length CGI feature film about an old-fashioned wood toy and a modern astronaut action figure vying for the attention of their owner. Toy Story met with critical success, gaining a consensus 100% rating from Rotten Tomatoes and winning the Academy Award for Special Achievement. John Lasseter is honored on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for his contributions to the movie industry. He currently works at Skydance Animation as Head of Animation
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