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How this small team at Pixar revolutionized computer graphics with software called 'RenderMan'

How Pixar's 'RenderMan' software revolutionized computer graphics

"Toy Story," "The Incredibles 2" and other Pixar movies are not only commercially successful, having grossed more than $10 billion worldwide. They also ushered in a new generation of computer-generated animation.

The Disney-owned animation studio is largely responsible for some of the most significant developments in computer graphics history.

The studio just celebrated the 30th anniversary of its RenderMan software, which has been the backbone of every one of its films and a core part of the visual-effects industry.

CNBC interviewed Pixar co-founder Ed Catmull and other employees to get an inside look at the technology of RenderMan and what it takes to make an animated film.