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Alumni News

Benjamin Su

Alumni pack the house for INSIDE OUT

June 20, 2015

Sheridan alumni and their families filled the theatre for Pixar’s latest hit film INSIDE OUT on June 19 in Oakville. Many alumni worked on the animated feature which gained rave reviews at its Cannes Film Festival world premiere last month. Among the grads who contributed to the film are Evan Bonifacio (Bachelor of Animation, 2008), Guillaume Chartier (Bachelor of Animation, 2008), Robb Denovan (Classical Animation, 2001), John Chun Chiu Lee (Classical Animation, 2002), Allison Rutland (Computer Animation, 2003), Domee Shi (Bachelor of Animation, 2011) and Benjamin Su (Classical Animation, 2002, 2003).

Stephen Barnes (Classical Animation, 1990) was on hand to speak to the audience about the animation industry and working at Pixar. The Sheridan instructor and mentor taught many of the alumni who worked on the film. Steve, whose film credits include Toy Story 2, Monsters Inc. and A Bug’s Life, has collaborated with INSIDE OUT director Pete Docter.

Ben Su (pictured) was lucky enough to work on all the main characters on INSIDE OUT which tells the story of 11-year-old Riley whose emotions get mixed up in her mind’s control centre following the family’s move.

It was a treat to work with so many alumni on the film as well, adds Ben, who has been at Pixar since 2009. “I was in the same class as a couple of them and we still show each other our shots for feedback, just like in school!”

The opportunity to work closely with director Pete Docter (who also directed Monsters Inc. and Up) was also cause for great excitement, says Ben. “He has a knack of doing original animated stories with a lot of heart and this film is no exception.”

In terms of animation style, INSIDE OUT is probably Pixar's “most cartoony film”, Ben says. “I grew up binging on Chuck Jones’ Bugs Bunny and Tweety Show every Saturday morning. I have always had a love for that style and it was great to see Pete push us into that direction.”

The success of INSIDE OUT is not a surprise to Ben who points to the film’s unique premise as one of the reasons. “I think it will change the way we view emotions. The film also touches on topics we can all relate to: challenges of moving into a different environment and the complex relationships we have with our parents growing up.”

Read Ben's tips for success here
Click here to watch the INSIDE OUT trailer