IFTA welcomes Disney/Pixar's John Lasseter to Dublin for a special In Conversation With Event

(Cars 2)

The Irish Film & Television Academy (IFTA), with thanks to Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures, Ireland, is delighted to announce two-time Academy Award®-winning writer/director/producer John Lasseter will be the subject of IFTA’s next In Conversation With… event on Monday 25th of July. Commenting on the In Conversation With… John Lasseter event, IFTA CEO Áine Moriarty said:

It is with great pleasure that we welcome John Lasseter to Ireland for this very special IFTA creative learning event. The animation sector is one of the strongest within the Irish industry with home-produced feature film and television productions achieving great success and reaching record audiences in Ireland around the globe. To see John Lasseter, one of the world’s leading pioneers of animated storytelling, share his vast knowledge and experience will be a huge thrill for Members of IFTA and his many Irish fans.”

Also featured at this Animation in Focus will be a special screening of John Lasseter’s latest animated film Cars 2 (below), which he directed and wrote – a follow up to his 2006 Golden Globe winning feature Cars.

Denise Ream, producer of Cars 2 and associate producer of Disney/Pixar’s Oscar winning feature animation Up, will also take part in the Q&A. The IFTA In Conversation With…John Lasseter will be chaired by film critic and journalist Paul Byrne.


John Lasseter is a two-time Academy Award®-winning director and creatively oversees all films and associated projects from Walt Disney and Pixar Animation Studios. Lasseter made his feature directorial debut in 1995 with Toy Story, the first-ever feature-length computer-animated film and, since then, has gone on to direct A Bug’s Life, Toy Story 2 and Cars.

His executive-producing credits include Monsters, Inc., Finding Nemo, The Incredibles, Ratatouille, WALL•E, Bolt and last year’s critically acclaimed Up, the first animated film ever to open the Cannes Film Festival and the recipient of two Academy Awards® for Best Animated Feature and Best Original Score. Lasseter also served as executive producer for Disney’s Oscar®-nominated films The Princess and the Frog and Tangled as well as Pixar’s most recent Academy Award winner for Best Animated Feature and Best Original Song, Toy Story 3, which is based on a story written by Lasseter, Andrew Stanton and Lee Unkrich.

Lasseter wrote, directed and animated Pixar’s first short films, including Luxo Jr., Red’s Dream, Tin Toy and Knick Knack. Luxo Jr. was the first three-dimensional computer-animated film ever to be nominated for an Academy Award® when it was nominated for Best Animated Short Film in 1986; Tin Toy was the first three-dimensional computer-animated film ever to win an Academy Award® when it was named Best Animated Short Film in 1988. Lasseter has executive-produced all of the studio’s subsequent shorts, including Boundin’, One Man Band, Lifted, Presto, Partly Cloudy, Day & Night and the Academy Award®-winning Geri’s Game (1997) and For the Birds (2000).

Under Lasseter’s supervision, Pixar’s animated feature and short films have earned a multitude of critical accolades and film-industry honors. Lasseter himself received a Special Achievement Oscar® in 1995 for his inspired leadership of the Toy Story team. He and the rest of the screenwriting team of Toy Story also earned an Academy Award® nomination for Best Original Screenplay, the first time an animated feature had ever been recognized in that category.

In 2009, Lasseter was honored at the 66th Venice International Film Festival with the Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement. The following year, he became the first producer of animated films to receive the Producers Guild of America’s David O. Selznick Achievement Award in Motion Pictures. Lasseter’s other recognitions include the 2004 Outstanding Contribution to Cinematic Imagery award from the Art Directors Guild, an honorary degree from the American Film Institute, and the 2008 Winsor McCay Award from ASIFA-Hollywood for career achievement and contribution to the art of animation.

Prior to the formation of Pixar in 1986, Lasseter was a member of the Computer Division of Lucasfilm Ltd., where he designed and animated The Adventures of Andre and Wally B, the first-ever piece of character-based three-dimensional computer animation, and the computer-generated Stained Glass Knight character in the 1985 Steven Spielberg-produced film Young Sherlock Holmes.

Lasseter was part of the inaugural class of the Character Animation program at California Institute of the Arts and received his B.F.A. in film in 1979. Lasseter is the only two-time winner of the Student Academy Award for Animation, for his CalArts student films Lady and the Lamp (1979) and Nitemare (1980). His very first award came at the age of 5, when he won $15 from the Model Grocery Market in Whittier, Calif., for a crayon drawing of the Headless Horseman.


The Irish Film & Television Academy (IFTA) is a not-for-profit organisation whose mission is the stimulation of original and creative production work, and the encouragement of excellence through recognition, education and leadership in film and television. 

IFTA runs a year-round programme of learning events and activities including; Masterclasses, previews screenings, Q&As, Tributes, In Conversation With…, panel and chapter focused events throughout the year, along with the annual industry Awards Ceremony.

Previous guests at IFTA In Conversation With… events include screenwriters Graham Linehan, Dick Clement & Ian La Frenais; actors Peter O’Toole, David Kelly and Ciarán Hinds; producer Redmond Morris and director Dearbhla Walsh.

For further information about IFTA visit www.ifta.ie


Disney Pixar Cars 2 is directed by John Lasseter and is the follow-up to his 2006 Golden Globe®-winning movie Cars. Star race car Lightning McQueen (voice of Owen Wilson) and the incomparable tow truck Mater (voice of Larry the Cable Guy) take their friendship to exciting new places in Cars 2 when they head overseas to compete in the first-ever World Grand Prix to determine the world’s fastest car. But the road to the championship is filled with plenty of potholes, detours and hilarious surprises when Mater gets caught up in an intriguing adventure of his own: international espionage.

Torn between assisting Lightning McQueen in the high-profile race and towing the line in a top-secret spy mission, Mater’s action-packed journey leads him on an explosive chase through the streets of Japan and Europe, trailed by his friends and watched by the whole world. Adding to the fast-paced fun is a colourful new all-car cast that includes secret agents, menacing villains and international racing competitors.
Disney Pixar Cars 2 is out in Irish cinemas on July 22, 2011, and will be presented in Disney Digital 3D™ in select theatres.


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