Pixar began in 1979 as part of the Lucasfilm computer division, known as the Graphics Group, before its spin-off as a corporation on February 3, 1986, with funding from Apple co-founder Steve Jobs, who became its majority shareholder.
Pixar got its start in 1974 when New York Institute of Technology's (NYIT) founder, Alexander Schure, who was also the owner of a traditional animation studio, established the Computer Graphics Lab (CGL), recruited computer scientists who shared his ambitions about creating the world's first computer-animated film.
Pixar is best known for its feature films technologically powered by RenderMan, the company's own implementation of the industry-standard RenderMan Interface Specification image-rendering application programming interface.
Pixar has produced 23 feature films, beginning with Toy Story (1995), which was the first ever computer-animated feature film. All of the studio's films have debuted with CinemaScore ratings of at least an "A−", which indicates a positive reception with audiences. The studio has also produced dozens of short films.
A large number of animators that make up the animation department at Pixar were hired around the time the studio released A Bug's Life (1998), Monsters, Inc. (2001) and Finding Nemo (2003). Although Toy Story (1995) was a successful film, it was Pixar's first feature film at the time, becoming the first major computer-animation studio to successfully produce theatrical feature films.
In January 2006, Disney ultimately agreed to buy Pixar for approximately $7.4 billion in an all-stock deal. Following Pixar shareholder approval, the acquisition was completed May 5, 2006.
The studio has earned 20 Academy Awards, 9 Golden Globe Awards, and 11 Grammy Awards, along with numerous other awards and acknowledgments. Many of Pixar's films have been nominated for the Academy Award for Best Animated Feature, since its inauguration in 2001, with ten Pixar winners being Finding Nemo (2003), The Incredibles (2004), Ratatouille (2007), WALL-E (2008), Up (2009), Toy Story 3 (2010), Brave (2012), Inside Out (2015), Coco (2017), and Toy Story 4 (2019).
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