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Animated Life by Floyd Norman

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Working Without a Net

   35

A High-Wire Act

You won't have the benefit of a net if you're directing an animated feature.

When the new Mission Impossible movie finally opened, I couldn't help looking for the screen credit “Directed by Brad Bird.” Jumping from the cartoon business to big–time live action with the likes of Tom Cruise has got to be a fairly daunting task. However, I've always considered Brad Bird to be a risk taker, and I remember him saying a creative person has to be willing to “leap off the cliff” if necessary.

In today's less-than-creative environment, it's cool to hear such sentiments expressed so openly. When Brad Bird journeyed to Pixar Animation Studios some years ago to “shake things up,” he was new to the company ...

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