Recommendation: The Pixar Touch

Can’t get enough of Pixar? I got more for you right here.

In my last review I declared my undying love for this revolutionary animation company, born of the wonderful documentary The Pixar Story. Now I have another Pixar tell-all to recommend to you, this time in book form: The Pixar Touch.

Written by David A. Price, this book reveals more of the fascinating origin story of Pixar Animation than Iwerk’s documentary could in ninety minutes. This turns out to be both a good thing and a bad thing. While you get a lot more detail that’s interesting and revealing about one of today’s most successful film production companies, you also get a lot more detail that’s kind of boring. I had to skim through the first few chapters, which delved heavily into the technical evolution of CGI.  Techno geeks, on the other hand, might find these chapters the most interesting of the book. It depends on your interests, but it’s definitely worth the parts you may have to skim for the fun tidbits you get. Some of which include:

Monsters Inc. faced a copyright suit right during production that almost delayed the opening of the movie.

-Tim Allen was not Pixar’s first choice for Buzz Lightyear; he was actually pretty far down on the list. In the end, though, he ended up heavily influencing the direction of the character and is partially responsible for the Buzz we know and love today.

-Pixar hired a fish expert to be a consultant on the designs for Finding Nemo. When he was a little too vehement about changing an inaccurate character design, one of the animators slung his arm over the fish guru’s shoulder and reminded him, “Adam…fish don’t talk.”

These are just a few teasers, the book is full of fun facts like these. The prose are clear and concise, not over written like many eye drooping non-fiction books out there. I, personally, listened to it on audiobook, and it improved many a dull car ride.

I mentioned the documentary Pixar Story gave a slightly idealized version of the company, Pixar Touch gives a much more balanced perspective, probably because it has more time to do so. It delved into some of the unpleasantries, such as the feud with Jeffry Katzenberg and the aforementioned lawsuit. Even so, the company still stands out as a remarkable group of filmmakers, and I really wanna run away and join them in their giant playground of a work office. If only I could draw…

So if you want a good nighttime read or something to listen to on your weekday commute, I highly recommend The Pixar Touch. Happy reading!