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Sunday, May 26, 2024

Box Office Boffo for CalArts

Student Work: Wreck It. Some schools measure the success of their alumni by the number of Nobel Prizes or Heisman Trophies they win. California Institute of the Arts does it another way. Since 1985, students from the Valencia school’s film and video program who have gone on to become directors have brought in a cumulative $26.1 billion in box office receipts. “That is a good way for us to quantify the results of a CalArts education,” said Margaret Crane, the school’s media relations manager. And that total is about to get bigger. This fall alone, two films are in release from CalArts alum: “Frankenweenie,” by Tim Burton, and “Hotel Transylvania”” by Genndy Tartakovsky. “Wreck it Ralph,” by Rich Moore is coming to theaters on Nov. 2. “Brave,” released in the summer, also was directed by CalArts graduates, Mark Andrews and Brenda Chapman. The roster of animation program alumni is a virtual Who’s Who of Hollywood that includes John Lasseter, chief creative officer at Walt Disney’s Pixar Animation Studios and co-director of the “Toy Story” and “Cars” franchises; and Andrew Stanton, whose credits include “Finding Nemo” and “Wall-E.”So what does that all mean for the school, which was founded in 1961 by film and television pioneer Walt Disney and his brother, Roy, as a training ground for all the arts? Not only does the school have a top-notch reputation that draws students internationally, but one third of the animation program’s adjunct instructors are alumni and big name directors like Lasseter and Burton have visited to talk about their work. – Mark R. Madler

Mark Madler
Mark Madler
Mark R. Madler covers aviation & aerospace, manufacturing, technology, automotive & transportation, media & entertainment and the Antelope Valley. He joined the company in February 2006. Madler previously worked as a reporter for the Burbank Leader. Before that, he was a reporter for the City News Bureau of Chicago and several daily newspapers in the suburban Chicago area. He has a bachelor’s of science degree in journalism from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

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