Saturday 17 August 2019

Steve Jobs was 'misunderstood hero,' says Pixar chief

Adrian Weckler

Adrian Weckler

The life of former Apple chief executive Steve Jobs was a “classic hero’s journey” according to the man who made animated films such as Toy Story with him at Pixar.

The president of Pixar and Walt Disney Animation Studios, Ed Catmull, said people have misunderstood Steve Jobs by only focusing on the negative behavioural aspect.

“Steve went through the classic hero’s journey,” Mr Catmull told the Irish Independent at the Web Summit. “There’s this great misconception that the Steve who acted the way he did in the early part of his career made this great Apple. That’s not what happened.

“The Steve that failed and went through more failures himself and transformed himself into a different person, who was empathetic and listened to people and was careful about how he impacted people -- that changed Steve was the one who made the new Apple.

“And most people don’t know that story. Because after Steve changed, everybody that was with him stayed with him for the rest of his life. So the full story wasn’t told.

Mr Catmull said that he had not seen the new Steve Jobs film, due to be released in Ireland next week. But he cautioned against judging Steve Jobs on his younger years. The film, which stars Michael Fassbender, focuses on three key Apple launches between 1984 and 1998. It does not focus on Mr Jobs’s launch of the iPod, iPhone or iPad.

“I haven’t seen it,” said Mr Catmull. “The only thing I can tell people is the fact that the real journey of Steve is not known. For me, the important lesson is not that if you behave like this, you might have this success.

“Rather, it’s going through personal transformation and learn from what happened. And in changing you become a better person. That’s the classic hero journey that Steve went through.”

Online Editors

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