Last week at the TED2012: Full Spectrum conference in Long Beach, CalArts alum Andrew Stanton (Film/Video BFA 87) revealed the "secret sauce" to great storytelling—the element of wonder—in his TED talk, "The Clues to a Great Story."
In the video posted above, the writer-director (WALL-E, Finding Nemo, among many others) shares what he knows about storytelling, reflecting on his life and lessons learned—in reverse chronological order. He talks about a story process without dialogue on WALL-E, working on Toy Story films at Pixar and the wonderment he felt when leaving the theater (at age 5) after seeing Bambi with his mom.
Like fellow CalArts alum Brad Bird (Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol), Stanton shifts his storytelling skills from feature animation films to live action with the release of John Carter later this month.
During a recent conference call for John Carter, Stanton also talked about the importance of story. Current CalArts student Chase Woolner was on the call and asked Stanton whether he approached the live-action process differently than animation.
From the transcript:
I didn't approach the story any differently. I mean to be honest, I think that's the misconception about animation...we don't approach our stories any differently...we just treat every character like an actor is going to play it. And that we're going to have a real set. And we're going to have real locations, and we're going to do all this stuff. We have since day one on Toy Story. So to me, there is no difference.
John Carter opens nationwide on March 9.