Fans can finally walk all over John Lasseter — and he’s thrilled about it.
The creative head of both Pixar and Walt Disney Animation Studios, as well as the director of Toy Story 1 and 2, A Bug’s Life and Cars 1 and 2, received Tuesday a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
In attendance were Pixar director Pete Docter; Cars 2 voice actors Don Rickles, Bonnie Hunt, Cheech Marin, John Ratzenberger, Owen Wilson and Emily Mortimer; musicians Brad Paisley and Randy Newman; and actor Patton Oswalt, star of Ratatouille. Disney and Pixar execs in attendance included studio chairman Rich Ross, studio president Alan Bergman, production president Sean Bailey, Disney and Pixar Animation Studios president Ed Catmull and Pixar general manager Jim Morris.
Lasseter thanked his creative collaborators at Pixar and Disney, especially Ed Catmull; his wife and sons; and the voice actors at the event. He got choked up before thanking the recently departed Steve Jobs.
“My first meeting with Steve was in 1987, Pixar was a computer company at the time, and there were four of us doing animation using computer technology,” he said. “I had this crazy idea at the time to make a short about a tin toy that is being menaced by this baby, and I told this story to Steve. He loved it and the only thing he asked of me was ‘John, make it great!’ Tin Toy went on to become the first computer-animated short to win an Academy Award. I shared that Oscar with Steve, and today, I share this star with Steve Jobs, without whom none of the films at Pixar would have been made.”
Lasseter’s star is located in front of the El Capitan Theater. He joked that it was a great location, as you never know where your star may end up and in front of the El Capitan is preferable to in front of Fredrick’s of Hollywood.
He also said he and his family came in 1964 to see Mary Poppins at the nearby Grauman’s Chinese Theater in Hollywood and how much it had meant to him as a kid.
The presentation is simultaneous with the home video release of Cars 2.