Edwin Catmull

Updated: 09/15/2017 by Computer Hope
Edwin Catmull

Name: Edwin Earl (Ed) Catmull

Born: March 31, 1945, in Parkersburg, West Virginia, USA

Computer-related contributions

  • Computer scientist.
  • President of Walt Disney Animation Studios and Pixar Animation Studios (2013).
  • Known for work with texture mapping, Catmull–Rom spline and Catmull–Clark subdivision surface.
  • Invented algorithms for spatial anti-aliasing and refining subdivision surfaces.
  • Independently discovered Z-buffering.

Significant publications

  • Creativity, Inc.: Overcoming the Unseen Forces That Stand in the Way of True Inspiration (2014).
  • How Pixar Fosters Collective Creativity (2009).
  • To Infinity and Beyond!: The Story of Pixar Animation Studios (2007).

Honors and awards

  • Gordon E. Sawyer Award (2008).
  • IEEE John von Neumann Medal (2006).
  • Oscar "for significant advancements to the field of motion picture rendering as exemplified in Pixar's RenderMan." (2001)..
  • Academy Scientific and Technical Award (1996).
  • Inducted as a Fellow of the Association for Computing Machinery (1995).
  • Academy Award (1993).


"If you give a good idea to a mediocre group, they'll screw it up. If you give a mediocre idea to a good group, they'll fix it."