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Thursday, February 02, 2006

BusinessWeek on Jobs, Pixar, Disney, and Apple

A great package of stories in BusinessWeek this week about Disney's acquisition of Pixar:

  • Steve Jobs' Magic Kingdom: How Apple's demanding visionary will shake up Disney and the world of entertainment


    "The alliance between Jobs and Disney is full of promise. If he can bring to Disney the same kind of industry-shaking, boundary-busting energy that has lifted Apple and Pixar sky-high, he could help the staid company become the leading laboratory for media convergence. It's not hard to imagine a day when you could fire up your Apple TV and watch Net-only spin-offs of popular TV shows from Disney's ABC Inc. (DIS ). Or use your Apple iPhone to watch Los Angeles Lakers superstar Kobe Bryant's video blog, delivered via Disney's ESPN Inc. `We've been talking about a lot of things,' says Jobs. `It's going to be a pretty exciting world looking ahead over the next five years.'"

  • An Insider's Take on Steve Jobs: Former Apple board member Edgar Woolard Jr. talks about the man, his vision, and how he'll likely contribute at Disney


    "I think people are misreading Steve Jobs. My opinion is that he will not come in with a heavy hand. I think he will try very hard to identify opportunities, and I think he will listen carefully to what Iger and the Disney management team has in mind, and will add suggestions.


    The two men seem to have a good relationship, and there's one thing that's for certain: If Steve has a good relationship with you, there's nobody better in the world to work with. He trusts you, and he listens, and he bounces his ideas off you. But if he doesn't trust you, it doesn't work."

  • A Pixar Exec's Fairy Tale Story: John Lasseter once swept Disneyland's streets. Now the animating force behind Toy Story may hold the key to the Magic Kingdom's future


    "With the deal, in fact, Lasseter becomes the new Walt Disney, with creative input not only over Disney's upcoming animated films but also over theme parks. For the 49-year-old, it's like returning home. Raised in Southern California, Lasseter's mother was a high school art teacher, and he grew up ashamed to tell high school friends he was still reading comics and playing with G.I. Joe. For kicks, he wrote letters to Walt Disney, hoping for -- but never getting -- a response."