- One highly touted aspect of Pixar’s production process is the role of the “braintrust” in workshopping the development of their films. This method (described by Catmull here) has its origins in the making of their first feature Toy Story, where director John Lasseter enjoyed a close creative collaboration with later Pixar directors Andrew Stanton, Lee Unkrich, Pete Docter, and Joe Ranft. The idea is that the key creative personnel on any given project must periodically submit to a group critique that unpacks and examines elements of the story under construction. This process is said to ensure the quality of Pixar’s films, but it also has resulted in a series of films that each toe the party line, values-wise. The pressures of this narrative-by-committee process probably account for why so many Pixar stories wind up in the same place: a garbage heap.