Tour dè Pixar
Omg omg omg omg omg we did it..... We actually went inside Pixar! We somehow got a tour with pure luck, and the help from others. It was such an amazing experience! I literally can die now and be okay with my life. First off, I'm not really allowed to talk about much other than the basics, and I could only get photos inside the lobby and out around the campus. But those few photos are probably the best photos I have in my entire computer. So I'm just going to take you through the entire tour. If you are anything like me and obsessed with the Animation industry, then hold on, because we have a lot of white space to fill!
Even pulling in through the main gate I was freaking out. I'm pretty sure we arrived 45 minutes early because I was so paranoid about being late. But once we walked in to the lobby, and had to sign in through an ipad to notify my friend that we have arrived, I was in heaven. It felt like the shot from Monsters Inc. where all the famous scarers were walking onto the scare floor. But that's how it felt to me with every employee in the building. You know, this one?
The main building is the Steve Jobs building. It is designed in a way to bring all of the employees together so they aren't limited to only making friends in their own departments. The cafeteria, bathrooms, and gift shop are all located right in the middle on the bottom floor. This way you are forced to interact with people that you wouldn't see on a day to day basis. Another super cool fact is that the whole building is built on top of giant rubber tubes. This way if there is ever an earth quake, the building will just slide around, and not completely crumble and lose all of their movie making magic. Each brick was hand selected to match a style that they wanted as well. I can't get over how beautiful that brick wall was.... and it's just bricks!
Our tour guide took us around the building explaining the animation process to us, which was super cool to hear even though I already knew it all....because I'm a nerd. But there was a gallery section on the top floor of the most recent movie that just came out, Good Dinosaur. It was so amazing to see all of the concept art, maquettes, and vfx sequences. I could have spent hours in that gallery alone! Next stop? Animation department!!! That was probably the coolest spot for me to see. I was sneaking peaks at everyones computers to see all of their Finding Dory shots they were working on, and I am now determined to look for each one once the movie comes out! But when the animation department was built, they realized that is was cheaper to buy sheds rather than cubicles. So each animator decks out their office "shed" space with themes. It was crazy to see the things they came up with. One animator built an alien ship that crashed in the jungle for his shed. Here's one decorated like the taco place Taqueria Tacocat".
After that we took a walk around the campus, and then headed over to the preproduction building. There are two main buildings, one for movies in pre-production, and the other for in production. While we were in the pre pro building, I saw Pete Doctor from upstairs!!!! That was like seeing a celebrity. =] Once we were done, I'm pretty sure I dropped at least a hundred bucks in the gift shop. Everything you can buy in there is sold solely in the studio. So if you're wearing a shirt from there, everyone knows you've been to the studio. I probably could write another 8 pages about what we talked about and saw, but I'll save you from my ranting. Enjoy some pictures instead!