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Pixar Animation Studios, commonly referred to as Pixar (), is an American computer animation film studio based in Emeryville, California that is a subsidiary of Walt Disney Studios, owned by The Walt Disney Company. Pixar began in 1979 as the Graphics Group, part of the Lucasfilm computer division, before its spin-out as a corporation in 1986, with funding by Apple Inc. co-founder Steve Jobs, who became the majority shareholder. Disney purchased Pixar in 2006 at a valuation of $7.4 billion by converting each share of Pixar stock to 2.3 shares of Disney stock, a transaction that resulted in Jobs becoming Disney's largest single shareholder at the time. Pixar is best known for CGI-animated feature films created with RenderMan, Pixar's own implementation of the industry-standard RenderMan image-rendering application programming interface, used to generate high-quality images.
Pixar has produced twenty feature films, beginning with Toy Story (1995), which was the first-ever computer-animated feature film, and its most recent being Incredibles 2 (2018). All 20 of its films have debuted with CinemaScore ratings of at least an "A−," indicating positive receptions with audiences. The studio has also produced dozens of short films. As of August 2018, its feature films have earned approximately $13 billion at the worldwide box office, with an average worldwide gross of $659.7 million per film. Finding Nemo (2003), along with its sequel Finding Dory (2016), as well as Toy Story 3 (2010) and Incredibles 2 (2018) are among the 50 highest-grossing films of all time, with the latter being the second all-time highest-grossing animated film with a gross of $1.2 billion. Fifteen of Pixar's films are also among the 50 highest-grossing animated films of all time.
The studio has earned nineteen Academy Awards, eight Golden Globe Awards, and eleven Grammy Awards, among many other awards and acknowledgments. Many of Pixar's films have been nominated for the Academy Award for Best Animated Feature since its inauguration in 2001, with nine winning; this includes Finding Nemo and Toy Story 3, along with The Incredibles (2004), Ratatouille (2007), WALL-E (2008), Up (2009), Brave (2012), Inside Out (2015), and Coco (2017). Monsters, Inc. (2001) and Cars (2006) are the only two films that were nominated for the award without winning it, while Cars 2 (2011), Monsters University (2013), The Good Dinosaur (2015), Finding Dory (2016), and Cars 3 (2017), were not nominated. Up and Toy Story 3 were also the respective second and third animated films to be nominated for the Academy Award for Best Picture, the first being Walt Disney Animation Studios' Beauty and the Beast (1991). Luxo Jr., a character from the studio's 1986 short film of the same name, is the studio's mascot.
On September 6, 2009, Pixar executives John Lasseter, Brad Bird, Pete Docter, Andrew Stanton, and Lee Unkrich were presented with the Golden Lion award for Lifetime Achievement by the Venice Film Festival. The award was presented by Lucasfilm's founder George Lucas.