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John Alan Lasseter (// LASS-ə-tər; born January 12, 1957) is an American filmmaker, animator, and voice actor. He is the head of animation at Skydance Animation. He was also previously the chief creative officer of Pixar Animation Studios, Walt Disney Animation Studios, and Disneytoon Studios, as well as the Principal Creative Advisor for Walt Disney Imagineering.
John Alan Lasseter
(1957-01-12) January 12, 1957 (age 66)
|Alma mater||California Institute of the Arts (BFA)|
|Awards||Inkpot Award (2009)|
Lasseter began his career as an animator with The Walt Disney Company. After being fired from Disney for promoting computer animation, he joined Lucasfilm, where he worked on then-groundbreaking use of CGI animation. The Graphics Group of the Computer Division of Lucasfilm was sold to Steve Jobs and became Pixar in 1986. Lasseter oversaw all of Pixar's films and associated projects as executive producer. In addition, he directed Toy Story (1995), A Bug's Life (1998), Toy Story 2 (1999), Cars (2006), and Cars 2 (2011). From 2006 to 2018, Lasseter also oversaw all of Walt Disney Animation Studios' (and its division Disneytoon Studios') films and associated projects as executive producer.
The films he has made have grossed more than US$19 billion, making him one of the most successful filmmakers of all time. Of the eight animated films that have grossed more than $1 billion, five of them are films executive produced by Lasseter. The films include Toy Story 3 (2010), the first animated film to pass $1 billion, Frozen (2013), the third-highest-grossing animated film of all time, as well as Zootopia (2016), Finding Dory (2016), and Incredibles 2 (2018). Frozen also held the title of the highest-grossing animated film of all time until 2019, and was the fifth-highest-grossing film of all time at the end of its theatrical run. He has won two Academy Awards, for Best Animated Short Film (for Tin Toy), as well as a Special Achievement Award (for Toy Story).
In November 2017, Lasseter took a six-month sabbatical from Pixar and Disney Animation after acknowledging what he called "missteps" in his behavior with employees. According to various news outlets, Lasseter had a history of alleged sexual misconduct toward employees. In June 2018, Disney announced that he would be leaving the company at the end of the year when his contract expired; he took on a consulting role until then. On January 9, 2019, Lasseter was hired to run Skydance Animation.