Kirk Wise

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Kirk Wise
Born (1963-08-24) August 24, 1963 (age 52)
San Francisco, California
Occupation Film director, animator, screenwriter, producer
Years active 1985–present

Kirk Wise (born August 24, 1963) is an American film director, animator and screenwriter best known for his work at Disney. Wise has directed such Disney movies as Beauty and the Beast, Atlantis: The Lost Empire, and The Hunchback of Notre Dame. He also directed the English language translation of Hayao Miyazaki's Spirited Away.


Wise graduated from Palo Alto High School and went on to study character animation at California Institute of the Arts. Early in his career, Wise worked as an animator on Disney's Sport Goofy in Soccermania (1987), The Great Mouse Detective (1986) and The Brave Little Toaster (1987), as well as Steven Spielberg's Amazing Stories episode "Family Dog".

Returning to Walt Disney Feature Animation, he began work on Oliver & Company (1988) as an assistant animator, but eventually joined the story department, where he was reunited with former CalArts classmate, Gary Trousdale. After working as storyboard artists on The Rescuers Down Under and The Prince and the Pauper, Wise and Trousdale were responsible for helming the celebrated Beauty and the Beast (1991), the first animated feature to be nominated for an Academy Award for Best Picture.


Title Year Role
The Great Mouse Detective 1986 Assistant animator
Amazing Stories 1987 Principal animator (1 episode)
Sport Goofy in Soccermania 1987 Animator
The Brave Little Toaster 1987 Animation director (development)
Oliver & Company 1988 Director, writer, animating assistant
Cranium Command 1989 Voice of Hypothalamus, opening sequence director
The Rescuers Down Under 1990 Storyboard artist
The Prince and the Pauper 1990 Storyboard artist
Beauty and the Beast 1991 Director
Homeward Bound: The Incredible Journey 1993 Executive producer
The Lion King 1994 Additional story material
The Hunchback of Notre Dame 1996 Director
Atlantis: The Lost Empire 2001 Director, story
Spirited Away 2002 Director, ADR Director (U.S. production)
Open Season 2006 Special thanks
Oceans 2009 Executive Producer
Waking Sleeping Beauty 2009 Himself, caricaturist
Chimpanzee 2012 Creative consultant
Untitled Animated Project[1] TBA Director


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