Now that Disney have purchased Lucasfilm and all it’s associated companies (ILM, Skywalker Sound, etc.), I’m rather pleased to see that Pixar and ILM are reunited again under a single parent company. Of course the real winner in this would have been Steve Jobs.
Pixar first started off as the Computer Group section of ILM back in 1979, producing groundbreaking VFX and animation for a variety of feature films before it was sold off to Steve Jobs in 1986. Disney bought Pixar from Steve in 2006 and consequently Jobs retained a very lucrative chunk of Disney shares as a consequence of the sale.
Now that Lucasfilm has been absorbed into the House of Mouse, ILM and Pixar are once again under one roof, at least metaphorically speaking, but still operating/competing as two separate companies.
Given that Jobs – or rather his estate – along with Lucas are two of Disney’s largest single shareholders, I suspect this deal would have made Jobs a rather happy man if he were still alive. Given that ILM commands large fees for their work, the combined profits from ILM and Pixar are going to set up the Jobs estate for many decades to come.