Pastor's Blog

April 13, 2016

“Frank talk, spirited debate, laughter, and love.”* That could be the description of a small group at St. John’s or even a conversation on the patio after Sunday worship, but it’s how Ed Catmull, president of Pixar Animation describes a “Braintrust meeting.”  It’s what they call a group of artists and filmmakers who come alongside a director as a new film is being “birthed” at the studio.  The Braintrust has no authority to make the director change course if something isn’t working – the Braintrust advises in a spirit of “frank talk, spirited debate, laughter, and love.”  They are not there to destroy the film.  They are trusted peers who believe in the artist and in the film, and want to see both succeed. 


As I read about the Braintrust in Catmull’s book, Creativity Inc., I was amazed that such teamwork and warm-hearted feedback existed in the hyper-competitive world of Hollywood filmmaking.   Catmull adds later, “you don’t have to work at Pixar to create a Braintr...

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