Lawrence Levy’s “To Pixar and Beyond” is a memoir that takes readers on a journey through his time as the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) of Pixar Animation Studios. The book offers an inside look at the early days of Pixar, the challenges it faced, and the eventual success that led to the creation of some of the most beloved animated films of all time. Throughout the book, Levy shares his experiences working with Steve Jobs, Ed Catmull, and other key figures in the Pixar story, as well as his own personal journey of self-discovery and transformation.
Chapter 1: The Beginning
In the first chapter, Levy introduces readers to the early days of Pixar, which was originally a division of Lucasfilm. He describes how the company was founded by a group of computer scientists who were passionate about using technology to create art. Levy also shares his own initial impressions of Pixar, which he found to be a unique and exciting place full of talented and creative people.
Chapter 2: The First Feature Film
In this chapter, Levy discusses the challenges that Pixar faced as it worked to create its first feature film, “Toy Story.” He describes how the company had to overcome technical difficulties and creative differences in order to bring the film to life, and how the team’s dedication to the project ultimately led to its success.
Chapter 3: The Steve Jobs Factor
Levy devotes an entire chapter to Steve Jobs, who played a key role in the early days of Pixar. He describes how Jobs’ vision and leadership helped to shape the company’s direction and drive its success, and how his relationship with Ed Catmull and John Lasseter ultimately led to the creation of some of the most beloved animated films of all time.
Chapter 4: The Disney Acquisition
In this chapter, Levy discusses the acquisition of Pixar by Disney, which was a major turning point for the company. He describes how the acquisition allowed Pixar to access Disney’s resources and infrastructure, but also brought new challenges and pressures that the company had to navigate.
Chapter 5: The Future of Pixar
In the final chapter, Levy looks to the future of Pixar and the animation industry as a whole. He discusses the challenges that the company faces in the years to come, including competition from other studios and changing technology, and offers his thoughts on how Pixar can continue to innovate and thrive in the years ahead.
Overall, “To Pixar and Beyond” is a fascinating and engaging memoir that offers readers an inside look at the early days of Pixar and the challenges that the company faced on its journey to success. Throughout the book, Levy shares his own personal journey of self-discovery and transformation, as well as his thoughts on the future of the animation industry. Whether you’re a fan of Pixar films or simply interested in the story of a successful company, “To Pixar and Beyond” is a must-read.