Take A Rare Peek Into The Pixar Archives

Just minutes away from Pixar Animation Studios stands a tall unassuming building that houses the incredible artwork from the company's rich history - this is the Pixar archives. Unlike the studio, the archives are not open to guests of employees - however, during our recent trip to the studio we were given a rare peek inside for an exclusive tour to celebrate Toy Story's 20th Anniversary. We were greeted by Lead Archivist, Christine Freeman and Pixar Historian, Juliet Roth who first led us through a room that held various art including, a life-size version of EVE (from WALL-E) and two sculpts of Mr. Jones, the dog-like Iguana from Toy Story of Terror! (featuring his facial features with a wide-opened mouth).

As we stepped into the larger room of the archives we noticed rows and rows of meticulously kept art - including a large collection of framed concept art from the short Boundin' hung upon the walls. As our group gathered around a large white table, I continued to glance around the room and recognized additional artwork from For the Birds, Sanjay's Super Team and my personal favorite short One Man Band.

To celebrate Toy Story's 20th Anniversary, Christine and Juliet were kind enough to pull various original art pieces from the film - including works from Tin Toy (the first-ever Academy Award winning animated film in 1988) and the unmade, Tin Toy Christmas (which was eventually altered to become Toy Story).

With a gentle touch and precision white gloves, Christine Freeman began her presentation by showcasing 10 original storyboards of Tin Toy by John Lasseter and an original sketch from Tin Toy Christmas featuring Tinny with a Christmas tree by Joe Ranft. In addition to the sketches, a couple sculpts were lined on the table showcasing various character concepts of Dummy (who would later evolve into Woody) from Tin Toy Christmas - along with a sculpt created by Pete Docter of Mr. Merkel (Tin Toy Christmas) who looked similar to Carl (Up).

We were shown numerous variations of Buzz and Woody from different artists and it was exciting to be able to correctly guess (as they quizzed us) the artists as we have admired the artistic point-of-view of Jeff Pidgeon, Bud Luckey and Ralph Eggleston for many years. An interesting note was that many artists often doodle on the backside of production notes, various flyers or even feature test scripts! One of the sketches just happened to be on the backside of the Toy Story feature test script dated February 24, 1992, lucky for us Christine read aloud a couple lines from the sheet:
"...a beam of flashlight shines on the dresser...Lunar Larry blinks at the blinding light..."
It was a real honor to hear an original line from the film back from when Buzz Lightyear was still named Lunar Larry.

We were delighted when we were shown original unfixed color scripts completed by Ralph Eggleston of Andy's room (pictured above) and Sid's room. An interesting fun fact about the Andy's room piece is that there is an additional panel stapled on top of one of the scenes in the color scripts (located second from the right). It was explained that this addition was made during production and there are only a limited group of artists that know what the original panel looks like underneath the staples! 

The stories were plentiful as the archivists shared another regarding an early concept sculpt of Buzz Lightyear (shown two photos above with glass helmet). The team explained that once a sculpt is made, several molds are then produced in order to persevere the piece for not only the archives but for traveling shows as well as showpieces within the studio. This particular sculpt featured a glass helmet which was bought at a local lighting store for $7.95 making it easy for the team to keep several helmets on-hand in case of breakage. However, things wouldn't remain simple as the 7" neck-less globe became discontinued at the local store and the team now has the glass helmets hand-blown in Italy when re-creating further sculpts.

As our tour came to a close the duo opened up the floor for questions. I had so many questions swirling around my head and was lucky enough to ask a few. I inquired if the archivists help assist artists and directors pull various sketches and pieces to publish in the "Art of" books for the films. The archivists do share input, in fact the upcoming book Funny! Twenty-Five Years in the Pixar Story Room was a labor-intensive job as the team pulled over 500 pieces of art to be considered for the book. I also inquired if the archives contain art and materials from cancelled projects such as Newt and various other shorts and features. It was great to hear that those works are indeed in safekeeping as well as items from the now-closed Pixar Canada studio. 

The Pixar archives will be relocating to a larger facility that is closer to the studio this fall - making art transfers an easier task for the team. We hope to one day visit the updated archives as well. This was a true once-in-a-lifetime experience and we wholeheartedly recommend purchasing any of the "Art of" books geared towards each Pixar film to get a glimpse of what it was like walking through the Pixar archives - it literally is the next best thing.

For the ultimate Toy Story fan, the coveted and highly-sought-after Toy Story - The Sketchbook Series is a great look into the visual history of the film with much of the same concept artwork we saw on the tour included for reference. Read our review of the book and view photos here.

Pick up a copy of Funny! Twenty-Five Years In The Pixar Story Room (released Nov 17) on Amazon - the collection of Pixar "Art of" books can be found here.

Related Posts

Pixar Post - Julie



4K Ultra HD,7,A Bug's Life,6,A113,3,Aaron Hartline,4,Adam Burke,1,Adrian Molina,27,Alan Barillaro,12,Albert Lozano,1,Alex Mandel,1,Alex Marino,1,Allison Rutland,1,Alonso Martinez,1,Ana Lacaze,1,Andrea Warren,5,Andrew Gordon,3,Andrew Jimenez,1,Andrew Stanton,55,Angelique Reisch,3,Angus MacLane,32,Animation Podcast,7,Annie Awards,1,App Review,7,Apple Watch,1,Armie Hammer,2,Art,37,Art of Animation Resort,5,Artists Help Japan,6,Austin Madison,4,Awards,95,Axel Geddes,1,Bao,11,Barney Jones,1,Beth Sullivan,1,Bill Hader,1,Bill Watral,1,BIlly Crystal,2,Bing Bong,2,Blu-Ray,57,Bo Peep,21,Bob Pauley,1,Bob Peterson,21,Bob Whitehill,2,Bobby Podesta,4,Bobby Rubio,4,Book,8,Book Review,54,Boundin,1,Box Office,3,Brad Bird,57,Brave,144,Breaking,5,BREAKING News,56,Brian Fee,26,Brian Larsen,4,Bryn Imagire,2,Bud Luckey,1,Buzz Lightyear,30,Buzz Lightyear of Star Command,1,Car Toons,2,Cars,76,Cars 2,19,Cars 3,94,Cars Land,37,Cars Toons,12,Chris Chua,1,Chris Sasaki,1,Christina Faraj,1,Christine Freeman,1,Clip,4,Coco,105,Contest,11,Craig Foster,2,Cristela Alonzo,2,Cruz Ramirez,13,Custom Pixar Gear,6,Cynthia Slavens,1,D23,36,D23 Expo,9,Dan Scanlon,106,Dana Murray,8,Daniel Arriaga,4,Danielle Feinberg,6,Darla Anderson,27,Dave Mullins,14,David Lally,9,David Munier,2,Dean Kelly,4,Deleted Scene,6,Denise Ream,5,Detroit Auto Show,1,Dia de los Muertos,7,Dice Tsutsumi,8,Die Cast Cars,23,Digital,2,Director's Commentary,9,Dirk Van Gelder,1,Disney California Adventure,43,Disney Cruise,3,Disney Infinity,43,Disney Infinity 2.0,6,Disney Infinity 3.0,15,Disney Infinity Next,1,Disney Interactive,1,Disney Movie Club,1,Disney Movies Anywhere,4,Disney on Ice,1,Disney World,67,Disney+,22,Disneyland,32,Disneyland Paris,8,DisneyPlus,15,Domee Shi,11,Dominique Louis,1,Ducky and Bunny,4,Duke Caboom,5,Dylan Sisson,1,Easter Eggs,39,Ed Catmull,28,Edna Mode,1,Edwin Chang,4,Emilie Goulet,1,Emron Grover,1,Enrico Casarosa,19,Erica Milsom,6,Erik Smitt,1,Everett Downing,1,Exclusive,15,Fan Art,34,Farhez Rayani,2,Finding Dory,101,Finding Nemo,24,Float,4,Forky,19,Forky Asks A Question,5,Forum,3,Fran Kalal,1,Fun Facts,8,Gabby Gabby,1,Galyn Susman,7,Garrett Taylor,1,Giggle McDimples,2,Giveaway,5,Google Hangout,5,Hawaiian Vacation,2,Hidden Items,3,Imagineering,3,Incredibles 2,106,Inside Out,152,Interview,39,Jack-Jack,1,Jackson Storm,10,Jake Monaco,2,James Ford Murphy,13,Jamie Roe,1,Jason Deamer,1,Jason Johnston,3,Jay Shuster,3,Jay Ward,10,Jeff Danna,4,Jeff Pidgeon,1,Jeremie Talbot,1,Jerome Ranft,1,Jessie,3,Jesus Martinez,2,Jim Capobianco,4,Jim Morris,7,Joe Ranft,2,John Goodman,1,John Lasseter,69,John Ratzenberger,2,John Walker,4,Jon Reisch,3,Jonas Rivera,31,Jonathan Pytko,2,Josh Cooley,52,Jude Brownbill,2,Juliet Roth,1,Katherine Sarafian,1,Katy Wu,1,Kelly Bonbright,1,Kelsey Mann,14,Kemp Powers,5,Kerry Washington,2,Kevin O'Hara,1,Kevin Reher,3,Kitbull,6,Knick Knack,2,Kori Rae,25,Krissy Cababa,3,Kristen Lester,8,La Luna,18,Lamp Life,6,Laura Meyer,2,Lava,21,Lee Unkrich,77,Lighting McQueen,39,Lightning McQueen,1,Lightning McQueen's Racing Academy,2,Lindsey Collins,6,Ling Tu,1,Loop,6,Lou,17,Lou Hamou-Lhadi,1,Louise Smythe,1,Luxo Jr.,3,Mahyar Abousaeedi,1,Manticore,1,Marc Greenberg,1,Marc Sondheimer,5,Mark Andrews,39,Mark Nielsen,6,Mark Orton,1,Mark Walsh,35,Matt Jones,3,Matt Nolte,1,Matthew Luhn,2,Merida,15,Michael B. Johnson,2,Michael Blackmon,1,Michael Comet,2,Michael Fong,3,Michael Frederickson,1,Michael Giacchino,27,Michael Warch,1,Michal Makarewicz,6,Mike Venturini,1,Mike Wazowski,2,Mike Wu,1,Miss Fritter,1,Monsters At Work,6,Monsters Inc,50,Monsters University,177,MotoExpo,1,Motorama,3,Movie,1,Movie Review,19,Municiberg,1,Mychael Danna,6,Natalie Certain,3,Nathan Farris,2,Nathan Fillion,2,Newt,1,Nick Pitera,1,Nicole Paradis Grindle,4,Onward,46,OUT!,1,Owen Wilson,2,Party Central,12,Partysaurus Rex,50,Patrick Lin,2,Paul Abadilla,8,Pete Docter,119,Peter Sohn,33,Philip Metschan,2,Piper,16,Pixar Animation Studios,172,Pixar Archives,2,Pixar Artist Showcase,2,Pixar Canada,14,Pixar Concept Art,33,Pixar Fest,4,Pixar In A Box,2,Pixar in Concert,1,Pixar In Real Life,3,Pixar Internships,2,Pixar Minute,4,Pixar Pier,9,Pixar Pipeline Project,8,Pixar Place,1,Pixar Post Book Club,12,Pixar Post Record,1,Pixar Putt,1,Pixar Shorts,139,Pixar Studio Story,2,Pixar Toys,66,Pizza Planet Truck,2,Podcast,74,Poster,11,Presto,4,Products,273,Products - A Bug's Life,9,Products - Brave,29,Products - Cars,38,Products - Cars 2,9,Products - Cars 3,20,Products - Coco,12,Products - Finding Dory,10,Products - Finding Nemo,9,Products - Incredibles 2,20,Products - Inside Out,16,Products - Monsters Inc,18,Products - Monsters University,24,Products - Onward,5,Products - Ratatouille,10,Products - Shorts & TV Specials,57,Products - Soul,1,Products - The Good Dinosaur,7,Products - The Incredibles,12,Products - Toy Story,42,Products - Toy Story 2,9,Products - Toy Story 3,5,Products - Toy Story 4,19,Products - Up,9,Products - WALL-E,9,Purl,7,Radiator Springs,7,Ralph Eggleston,11,Randy Newman,6,Ratatouille,22,RenderMan,4,Renee Tam,1,Review,33,Rib Tickles,1,Ricky Nierva,4,Riley's First Date,6,Rob Thompson,1,Robert Kondo,5,Ronnie Del Carmen,6,Rosana Sullivan,6,Rosie Cole,1,Sandra Karpman,1,Sanjay Patel,13,Sanjay's Super Team,18,Saschka Unseld,30,Scott Morse,1,Sequoia Blankenship,1,Shanghai Disney,2,Sharon Calahan,5,Shawn Krause,1,shopDisney,3,Shufflerz,1,SIGGRAPH,3,Small Fry,3,Smash and Grab,3,Soul,14,Soundtrack,50,SparkShorts,20,Stephany Folsom,1,Stephen Karski,1,Sterling,2,Steve Jobs,6,Steve Pilcher,1,Steve Purcell,18,Steven Clay Hunter,1,Store - Amazon,69,Store - App Store,12,Store - Barnes and Noble,3,Store - Best Buy,4,Store - Disney Store,43,Store - eBay,8,Store - Hallmark,1,Store - iTunes,45,Store - Target,14,Store - Toys R Us,4,Sulley,2,Tales From Radiator Springs,5,Teaser,2,Ted Mathot,1,Teddy Newton,2,Television Specials,3,The Blue Umbrella,40,The Good Dinosaur,93,The Incredibles,41,The Incredibles 2,35,Thomas Jordan,1,Thomas Newman,3,Tia Kratter,1,Tim Allen,4,Tin Toy,1,Tinny,1,To Protect and Serve,4,Toby Chu,1,Tokyo Disney,1,Tony DeRose,1,Tony Fucile,3,Tony Hale,3,Toy Hunt,1,Toy Review,31,Toy Story,151,Toy Story 2,2,Toy Story 3,5,Toy Story 4,114,Toy Story Land,15,Toy Story of Terror,37,Toy Story That Time Forgot,25,Trailer,143,Tylor Tuskmon,2,Type - Books,27,Type - Clothing,8,Type - Collectibles,26,Type - Holiday,2,Type - Pins,1,Type - Plush,13,Type - Toys,39,UP,19,Valerie LaPointe,3,VanArts,5,Victor Navone,1,Video Games,51,Vinylmation,9,Wall-e,23,Wind,4,Woody,23,YouTube Live,5,
Pixar Post: Take A Rare Peek Into The Pixar Archives
Take A Rare Peek Into The Pixar Archives
Pixar Post
Loaded All Posts Not found any posts VIEW ALL Readmore Reply Cancel reply Delete By Home PAGES POSTS View All RECOMMENDED FOR YOU LABEL ARCHIVE SEARCH ALL POSTS Not found any post match with your request Back Home Sunday Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat January February March April May June July August September October November December Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec just now 1 minute ago $$1$$ minutes ago 1 hour ago $$1$$ hours ago Yesterday $$1$$ days ago $$1$$ weeks ago more than 5 weeks ago Followers Follow THIS PREMIUM CONTENT IS LOCKED STEP 1: Share to a social network STEP 2: Click the link on your social network Copy All Code Select All Code All codes were copied to your clipboard Can not copy the codes / texts, please press [CTRL]+[C] (or CMD+C with Mac) to copy Table of Content