john lasseter – presenting with emotion

There has been a great deal of discussion in the past year or so as to whether the animation studio Pixar has lost its way with its recent critically mauled films - notably Cars 2 and Planes. I’m sure there are many of us who in 1995, as adults and children, sat in wonder and amazement at the breathtaking Toy Story

In August of this year one of the key people behind the immense success of that ground-breaking film, the late Steve Jobs, was awarded the Disney Legend Award. Pixar’s Chief Creative Officer John Lasseter accepted the award on behalf of the Jobs family. 

His speech was extremely moving and passionate - painting a fascinating picture of Lasseter’s once boss, mentor and friend.

It offers up many examples of the foundations of a beautifully constructed speech and the undeniable power of allowing your emotions to surface. John Lasseter is clearly a passionate and emotional man. This, combined with his honesty and authenticity, makes the speech so moving. 

Opening with “The first time I met Steve Jobs” his intense feelings are released - through fighting back the tears we know how much he must have meant to him. His speech is full of personal disclosure and, through touching on his own personal loss, is also very brave. However he still doesn’t forget to make us laugh before he finishes.  

What is most effective about this presentation for me though is that John Lasseter, an extraordinary creative talent in his own right, never allows himself to get in the way of who and what his speech is about.

It is a lasting tribute to someone who was considered to be one of the best speakers out there. I just wonder whether Steve Jobs would have given the green light to creating a sequel to the near perfect Finding Nemo. Only time will tell if Finding Dory was a good move.

Image credit: Flickr


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