Monster, Inc.
BEHIND THE SCREAMS:
PETE DOCTER AND HIS CO-DIRECTORS


Monster, Inc.
page 4

This page was created on November 01, 2001
This page was last updated on May 22, 2005

BEHIND THE SCREAMS:
PETE DOCTER AND HIS CO-DIRECTORS

Click to enlargeTo assist him in creating "Monsters, Inc.," Docter enlisted the support of two talented co-directors. Lee Unkrich had joined Pixar as a supervising editor on the original "Toy Story" and quickly became an integral part of the team. Drawing on his live-action filmmaking roots, he was able to bring elements of traditional film production into Pixar's computer-animation process. He worked closely with the film's layout team on the staging, composition and cinematography and lent his editorial expertise to help tell the story in the most compelling manner. "Lee was a major influence on the film," Docter notes. "We totally relied on him for a lot of the staging. He did a brilliant job working with Ewan Johnson and the layout team to give the film a look and feel that is very dynamic and exciting. He also worked closely with Jim Stewart and his editorial team to give the film a sense of excitement and fluid movement."

Click to enlargeCo-director David Silverman became a key player in the area of story and worked closely with the story artists and writers to add humor and heart. According to Docter, "David is a hilarious, funny guy and brought a lot in terms of the relationship between Mike and Sulley. He helped create a chemistry between them and gave us lots of ideas throughout the whole story process."

Click to enlargeUnkrich notes, "During my time at Pixar, it's been my philosophy to keep the films really rooted in a kind of live-action sensibility even though they're animated. Because our medium and our films look so hyper-realistic, we're able to have some fun with the audience. Intellectually, they know that what they're seeing is not real and is completely fabricated, the images look completely realistic. I love the idea of creating an engaging, entertaining, and emotional experience by manipulating data in a computer. There's something magical about creating something that is 100% manufactured, yet can move audiences so deeply.

"Working with Pete has been great," adds Unkrich. "He is a brilliant animator and one of the nicest guys you can imagine working with. He really inspires the crew and has brought a tremendous sense of fun to this entire production."

As for his directing debut, Docter notes, "For me, the fun of directing has been the great sense of discovery. I love working with people that I can learn from. As a director, you're constantly faced with situations that you've never encountered before. It's exciting to explore the creative possibilities and to discover new things all the time. Ultimately, the real satisfaction is telling a story that people respond to."

Lasseter adds, "Pete has done a great job. I knew from the beginning that he was going to be a great director. His instincts are remarkable and his sense of entertainment through movement is second to none. On 'Toy Story' I always relied on him and there are many signature Pete moments in the film. We share a natural curiosity for things. When he first came to Pixar, he was always trying to figure out how computers could be used for practical jokes. One of my key fundamentals of directing is to have fun. And even though Pete has been working harder than anyone I've ever known on this film, he always had a smile on his face. You can't help but love Pete and that shows in the film. If you have a great attitude and everybody around you is having fun, it will show on the screen - and it does. 'Monsters, Inc.' is a fun movie."

Docter adds, "I really relied on John's experience and amazing eye throughout the process. John basically invented this medium, and he was such a help at every stage of the production, from initial concept to the final frame of film."

Monsters, Inc. Main page
About the Amazing Technology -pg 2
About the Origins -pg 3
About the Directors -pg 4
About Animating Memorial Monsters -pg 5
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