The History of Pixlar and How Animation Films Came to Be Essay

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Many are familiar with the image of a little lamp hoping across the screen and stomping over the “i” of Pixar in the beginning and end of every one of their films. This little lamp is named Luxo Jr. and is both the star and name of Pixar’s first ever animated short film. It features Luxo Jr. playing with the famous Pixar ball, yellow with a blue stripe and red star, as Luxo Sr. observes nearby. In Luxo Jr.’s over excitement and constant jumping, it accidentally deflates the ball. Disappointed but not for long, it finds a larger ball to play with as Luxo Sr. looks on, shaking its head. Luxo Jr. is more important than people realize, having paved the way to Pixar’s greatness. According to Ed Catmull, one of the founders of Pixar, this 2 …show more content…
Each frame began as a hand drawn sketch, photographed individually and stitched together so that the images appeared to move (Gross and Ward, 231). As time progressed, a process called celluloid animation came around in 1914 and revolutionized animation. Instead of redrawing every single scene, the animator could print a single stationary backdrop on a transparent sheet (cel) and be troubled with only the movement of the characters (). The most popular cartoon during this time was Felix the Cat made by Pat Sullivan Studios achieving fame comparable to that of Hollywood stars. Its success was so great that it was the first animated cartoon to have merchandise, appearing on packaging and having its own stuff toy by 1926 (Solomon 37). The powerhouse that really changed animation history and set the standard was Walt Disney Animation Studios. “When Walt Disney arrived in Hollywood in 1923 to begin his animated cartoon business, he thought he came too late to really make a name for himself” (Capodagli and Jackson 8). But he was able to incorporate new techniques and ideas that refreshed the animation scene. By bringing sound to Mickey Mouse in the episode Steamboat Willie he completely wiped out the silent era of animation putting Felix the Cat in the background. They solidified their status when they released the first full color, three-strip Technicolor cartoon Flowers and Trees. The use of color added

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