John Lasseter's pair of Oscars has a new friend: a lifetime achievement trophy. The Pixar and Disney animation chief received the award Friday night for his devotion to the 40-minutes-or-less average from Shorts International, an entertainment organization which endorses, distributes, broadcasts and creates short films.
"It feels incredible because I love short films," said Lasseter. "I love the art form and what it did for me as a filmmaker. I learnt so much from making short films. They're these little gems, these unbelievable little ideas that are not meant to be a feature film. They're ideal unto themselves. A great short film leaves you smiling and thinking about it."
Lasseter won the animated short film Oscar in 1988 for "Tin Toy," as well as a particular achievement award in 1995 for "Toy Story," the primary feature-length computer-generated film. The lifetime achievement award from Shorts International may not be his only prize this weekend. He's nominated with the other "Toy Story 3" filmmakers for best modified script.
"Toy Story 3" is also rivaling in the sound editing, original song, animated feature and best picture categories. Lasseter is hopeful about its chances for the top prize, even though the motion picture academy has never gave an animated film with the best picture honor. "Toy Story 3" is only the third animated film to be nominated in that category.
"I do consider we will one day see an animated film win the best picture Oscar, and I hope it's on Sunday," said Lasseter. "I think that over time, more and more of Hollywood and the Academy have gotten to know animation. It's precisely the same as live action filmmaking. We tell great stories. We use great actors. We just use a dissimilar camera."