Reading List: Creativity, Inc.

In his vibrant, entertaining account of Pixar’s evolution from high-end computer company to animated film powerhouse, Ed Catmull, Ph.D., president of the company and of Walt Disney Animation Studios, invites readers for a behind-the-scenes tour to reveal the inner workings, missteps and triumphs of the company behind Finding Nemo; The Incredibles; Up; Toy Story; Monsters, Inc.; and many more blockbuster movies.

Catmull, who co-founded the studio in 1986 with Steve Jobs and John Lasseter, identifies and explains the leadership strategies and styles that facilitated Pixar’s success, explaining the problems the company faced and the steps taken to fix  them.

Creativity, Inc. also boasts two bonus features: The first is an appendix of 33 points that every leader should heed—for example, when it comes to shutting down alternative viewpoints, there is nothing as effective as being convinced you are right. The second bonus is a chapter about Catmull’s relationship with Jobs. As Catmull says upfront, the book isn’t just for animators and filmmakers, but for “anyone who wants to work in an environment that fosters creativity and problem-solving.” A fascinating inside look at the fine arts of animation and leadership, it’s an all-around good read.

by Ed Catmull with Amy Wallace

April
Random House; $28

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