Pixar has taken over the world with its beautiful animation and thought-provoking elements of story telling. Over the years I studied and reviewed these aspects and thought about the key formulas into making a successful Pixar film. Here they are, enjoy.
1. Main character with inside struggles that has to overcome difficulties with friendship.
Among all things Pixar is trying to teach, friendship seems the most important. In Every Pixar film we see a struggling protagonist that can’t succeed the mission without a pal or a group of sidekicks. In “The Good Dinosaur” Arlo loses his way from home and the only way to emotionally keep him stable throughout his journey is finding a friend in the form of the human named Spot. In “Cars” Lightning McQueen is a jerk race car that finds his humility throughout the humble friends in Radiator Springs.
2. Have characters get lost in a strange place.
This is a key setting piece for these films. Characters that get lost make for an exciting adventure which is obvious when WALL-E the trash cleaning robot gets taken to space inside an environment he is isn’t used to. The Incredibles also got stranded on a remote island and have to figure out a way to destroy Syndrome’s attack on the city. Losing ones way is a gateway for excitement.
3. Hide in really thought-provoking themes.
Children and adults love Pixar films about the same amount due to the amount of fan service for both. The studio makes sure to follow-up on different themes so that the film has a real emotional impact. In “Up” we see Carl lose his child and later his wife before he could take her on an adventure to South America. Realizing that she is still with him in heart, he takes the house to his childhood dreams. Even though life can be hard, people have to realize that they can still make dreams come true. In “Toy Story” Woody believes he isn’t the favorite toy anymore and tries to get rid of Buzz. We all want to be the best, but we must know to be humble and accept we are still amazing.
4. Make sure it’s a connected universe.
There are no examples needed for this one. Pixar has made sure to let their fans know that all of their films co-exist in the same universe making for a lot of blown minds and exciting future Easter eggs. The cars and toys rose above the humans and WALL-E is the world’s new robot Jesus. (Just a conspiracy)
5. One scene to make sure everyone cries their eyes out.
These films are the ones you go to when you just bought a bucket of ice cream for no apparent reason than to sob. Pixar has taken emotions right out of every living soul and brought them to the weakest point. Audiences cried when they realized the missing happiness of being a child from “Toy Story 3” and “Inside Out”. Everyone also cried when they realized that Dory’s parents made trails everyday just so that she could find her way back home. WHAAAAAAA!….sorry..
6. One really mean jerk hole.
No one realizes it but Pixar has a knack for making some really annoying, mean villains. In “Monsters Inc.” Randal the monster lizard, wants to take over the company by stealing screams from stolen children. He legit fights Sully and Mike and won’t let up even a little. No remorse. Nothing is worse than the chicken man from “Toy Story 2” though. Screw that guy.
These are the top 6 formula aspects into making a Pixar film! Thanks for reading and follow for more updates!