In the heated ramp-up to the Academy Awards, Vanity Fair‘s annual Oscar issue is tipping a hat to a generation of filmmakers trained at California Institute of the Arts (CalArts) who have become icons of the animation industry in a special feature article from Sam Kashner and photography by Annie Leibovitz. “The Class That Roared” reunites the now famous class at CalArts’ Valencia, Calif. campus.
Kashner’s story includes Disney-Pixar CCO John Lasseter, two-time Oscar winner Brad Bird, stop-motion visionary Tim Burton and Frozen co-director Chris Buck as they reminisce about their school days.
“My experience at CalArts was such an awesome, special time in my life,” says Lasseter. “Not only did I meet some of my best friends there, but I got to learn and work alongside some of the greatest talent in the animation industry. For CalArts and its animation program to be featured in Vanity Fair is so exciting, as the school has provided—and continues to provide—an incredible education to so many people. I can’t wait to see the impact the next generation of CalArts alumni will have on our industry and culture.”
The once-in-a-lifetime Annie Leibovitz shot, taken at the campus, captures the unprecedented reunion of 19 alumni–including Brave directors Brenda Chapman and Mark Andrews, Coraline director Henry Selick, Brad Bird, Chris Buck, Tim Burton, Pete Docter, Mike Giamo, Leslie Goran, Stephen Hillenberg, Glen Keane, John Lasseter, Rob Minkoff, Rich Moore, John Musker, Jerry Rees, Andrew Stanton, Genndy Tartakovsky and Kirk Wise.