Pixar animator dies

Pixar animator and writer Joe Ranft was one if two people killed in a car accident outside of Los Angeles.
Ranft died Tuesday when the car he was a passenger in plunged 130 feet off Highway 1 into the ocean, the Los Angeles Times reported Thursday. The driver was also killed and another passenger was injured. Ranft, 45, was nominated for an Academy Award for writing Toy Story and was the voice of Heimlich the Bavarian caterpillar in A Bug's Life.

"Joe was the undisputed storyboard master at Pixar: His boards were just inspiring, Monsters, Inc." director Pete Docter told the LA Times. "On Toy Story, his boards for the 'army man' sequence, which went into film pretty much unchanged, became the model we aspired to on the film."

Before moving to Pixar, Ranft worked on, Who Framed Roger Rabbit, Beauty and the Beast, The Lion King and Fantasia 2000. He was executive producer of Tim Burton's Corpse Bride, due this fall. I'm sure there will be a memorial credit to him on Cars.

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