OAKLAND, Calif.--If one thing is clear in the film business, it's that there has never been a studio as reliably successful as Pixar Animation Studios. Over 25 years, Pixar has turned out 11 feature films, and every single one of them has been a commercial and critical hit.
Over those 25 years, Pixar has built up a gigantic archive of storyboards, sketches, models, videos, and much more; since 2005, an exhibit featuring hundreds of individual elements of that archive has been traveling the world, delighting thousands of people from New York to England to Japan to Australia, and beyond.
Now the exhibit, titled "Pixar: 25 Years of Animation," has come back to the Emeryville, Calif., studio's backyard. It is currently appearing at the Oakland Museum of California, and currently features 500 pieces, including some from Pixar's latest smash hit, "Toy Story 3."
But the show naturally also has all kinds of treats from each of the studio's previous 10 films: "Toy Story," "A Bug's Life," "Toy Story 2," "Monsters, Inc.," "The Incredibles," "Cars," "Ratatouille," "Wall-E," Pixar's award-winning short films, and, of course, "Finding Nemo."
This is a pastel painting by Ralph Eggleston from 2003's "Finding Nemo" entitled "Sequence Pastel: First day."
This is a cast urethane resin model of an early Buzz Lightyear, made for "Toy Story" by Bud Luckey. The exhibit features models like this from all of Pixar's 11 feature films, including characters like Woody from "Toy Story," Linguine and Remy from "Ratatouille," Gill from "Finding Nemo," Mike from "Monsters, Inc.," and so on.
These are three images of the main stars of the "Toy Story" franchise, done for the original 1995 film: Woody and Buzz. In the upper left is "Woody and Buzz," done in pencil by Bob Pauley. On the right is the Woody model packet drawing done by Bud Luckey and Bob Pauley in mixed media. And on the lower left is "Buzz," by Bob Pauley, done in mixed media.
This is Luxo Jr. and the ball, which any Pixar fan should recognize as the studio's corporate mascots. This model was created in 2010 in plaster, styrene, and metal springs, by Neftali Alvarez, with printing by Carol Wang.
In "A Bug's Life," the ant colony at the heart of the story found itself having to make seasonal offerings of seeds and other goodies to a group of evil grasshoppers. This image of the offering stone was done in acrylic by Tia Kratter, with layout by Nat McLaughlin.
For 2001's "Monsters, Inc.," Tia Kratter--with maquette by Jerome Ranft--created "Sullivan Fur Pattern Studies," depicting several possible colors for the fur of Sully, one of the film's two main characters.
For 2004's "The Incredibles," Teddy Newton created this collage, called "The Jumper." Newton is one of Pixar's rising stars: he was the director of "Day and Night," the short film that accompanied 2010's "Toy Story 3."
According to the exhibit, a colorscript "is artwork that visually supports the emotional content of an entire story through general color, lighting, and mood. It depicts the whole story in a chronological format that allows one to see the basic color structure to be applied to the entire film. The colorscript is one of the first opportunities to see the story as a whole. It is a low-resolution view that reveals the full emotional arc of the film. Colorscripts work because detail is removed and ideas are presented in their most concise form."
This is the colorscript for "Wall-E," a digital painting done by Ralph Eggleston.
Fans of "Toy Story 3"--and there are many, given that the 2010 film surpassed $1 billion in worldwide box office--will instantly recognize this image from the movie's opening sequence. It is "Hamm Ship," done in pencil by Kristian Norelius.
Many fans of "Toy Story 3" recognized the fact that its climax featured one of the most existential moments in all of Pixar's films. Here, Robert Kondo captures an early moment in that sequence, the beat board for "End of the Line," done in a digital painting.