Pixar movie producer’s latest flick “Inside Out”

Jonas Rivera.
Jonas Rivera.

JONAS Rivera has worked his way up through the ranks of Pixar, going from wide-eyed intern to Academy award-nominated producer of Up.

He marks his 20th year at the giant animated studio with the release of his second produced film Inside Out, about emotions Joy, Sadness, Anger, Disgust and Fear that work in the headquarters in 11-year-old Riley’s brain.

Speaking to Community Newspaper Group at the end of his day at the office, Rivera described the time his jaw dropped when he saw the first footage of Toy Story in 1995 as part of the Pixar team.

“I grew up wanting to work for Disney; I wanted to be an animator but I was not artistic,” he said.

“I looked into internships and I had seen Pixar’s short films and called the studio and in a panic they said: ‘Can you come in tomorrow? We need help’.”

“The first thing they showed me was the army scene with the soldiers on the stairs and my jaw hit the floor, I was almost in tears.”Having worked on Toy Story 2, Cars, Monsters Inc. and Up in various capacities, he said an equal amount of research goes into every film, no matter what the topic.

“I don’t know if we did more research on Inside Out than any other film but we did a lot of research,” he said.

“Whether it is Cars or Monsters Inc. – we researched animals and factories for Monsters, but the idea for this one was so abstract.

“In our research we found out, and it sounds so simple now that I say it, there are reasons why we have emotions, for example we experience anger to keep things fair for ourselves.”

Rivera said while he and his colleagues spent their work life creating fun stories for children, it was not always fun and games at the office.

“Working at Pixar isn’t scooter rides and high fives, it isn’t always easy, it is hard but I never dread coming to work,” he said.

“Pixar is cool, it is an open place where we are able to have debate and can critique and make things better.

“We don’t perform brain surgery and we don’t put people on the moon but we treat our work like we do.”

With clock-off time of 5.30pm looming, Community Newspaper Group asked which emotion Rivera had felt throughout the day.

“Today it would have to be joy, to be honest,” he said.

“We are on the eve of the film coming out; this has been five years of my life.

“Having said that, there could be a dash of fear, because you never know what people will think of it until it has been released.”

Inside Out is in cinemas now.