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Disney Institute Interviews: Bill Plympton & Steve Segal
Jim Korkis

Jim meets the animators and gets the story behind things you might not know about Aladdin and Toy Story.

Bill Plympton was born in Portland, Oregon, on April 30, 1946. Plympton is considered the first animator to draw every frame for an animated feature film by himself.

All his life, Plympton has been fascinated by animation. He has created dozens of animated shorts including the Oscar nominated Your Face in 1987 and several animated feature films including Idiots and Angels.

His cartoons and illustrations have been published in several newspapers and magazines including Vogue, Rolling Stone, Vanity Fair, Penthouse, National Lampoon and the New York Times.

On June 19, 1997 he visited the Disney Institute in Florida and spent time with the Animation team. I got to spend some time with Plympton before his presentation that evening. The following are some Disney related excerpts from that much longer conversation.


Born in Richmond, Virginia in 1949, Steve Segal began his animation career doing traditional animation for 10 years making commercials and educational films. He co-directed the cult film Futuropolis with Phil Trumbo.

Moving to Hollywood in 1984, he became fascinated with computer animation. He worked on a variety of projects including the television series Pee Wee's Playhouse and titles for feature films.

He joined Pixar as an animator on Toy Story (1995). After the film, he worked on CD-ROMs based on Toy Story, a film for Walt Disney World, the Pixar short Geri's Game and some commercials.

The last project he worked on at Pixar was A Bug's Life. When he left Pixar, he concentrated on teaching and raising his two children.

"I love watching animation and exposing people to it," Steve told me. "I once visited Ward Kimball at his house and he showed me his toy and train collection. That is still a high point in my life for me."

In the spring of 1997, he dropped by the Disney Institute in Florida to visit some old friends who were working on the Animation team at the Institute. We took him out to dinner.

Before that happened, he showed all of us a reel of some oddball stuff for Toy Story (including a scene where Buzz lifts his head but they forgot to give the command to move the eyes as well so two blinking eyes were floating on Buzz's chest) and told some stories.



Source type Website
Language en
Document type Interview
Media type text


Id 4153
Availability Free
Inserted 2019-02-21