Most of you, by now, will know that Google has changed it’s logo, personally, I don’t have an opinion about this, but it made me think about logos, and that is why the FilmMunch spotlight is on Luxo Jr. This ShortFilm only runs for about 2 minutes, but it’s influence has been long lasting. Ever wondered why there is a hopping lamp that squashes the ‘I’ in the Pixar Logo? There is a reason for that.
There is intense simplicity in Luxo Jr. that makes you smile. Combined with it’s state of the art digital computer animation and a pleasant mini-score, this short film became the very first digitally animated short film to receive an Oscar nomination for Best Animated Short Film. Luxo Jr. shook the animation industry back in 1986, and shed needed insight on the capacity of computers, and was virtually the birth of a revolution, the CGI revolution. Nowadays it sometimes seems that some filmmakers overuse CGI, but more often that not we are reminded by Pixar that it truly is an art form.
John Lasseter was playing around with his Luxo lamp, when, one day a fellow colleague brought his baby son to work, and something stood out to Lasseter, the baby’s head was really big in comparison to the rest of his body, this proved humorous. He then started to envision a ‘baby’ Luxo lamp, and that is how Luxo Sr. and John Lasseter gave birth to Luxo Jr. The playful nature of babies also inspired the character behind Luxo Jr., and it’s no wander we find Luxo Jr. cute, seeing as he was originally inspired by a cute baby.
Luxo Jr. eventually joined the official Pixar logo, and had his cinematic debut at the end of Toy Story in 1995. It is applicable that Luxo Jr. still shines the light before every Pixar Feature, as it is a brilliant recall to the noble origins of such an artistic company. Through out the years Luxo Jr. has had variations to his performance on the Pixar logo, which is always exciting, but his true legacy will always remain.
The hopping lamp is an icon of creativity and entertainment, so Pixar, please, don’t ever remove Luxo Jr. from your logo!