Lifted (2006 film)

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Poster of Lifted
Poster of Lifted
Directed by Gary Rydstrom
Produced by Katherine Sarafian
Written by Gary Rydstrom
Music by Michael Giacchino
Edited by Steve Bloom
Distributed by Buena Vista Pictures
Release date
Running time
5 minutes
Country United States

Lifted is a 2006 Pixar computer-animated short film directed by Gary Rydstrom. This is the first film directed by Rydstrom, a seven-time Academy Award winning sound editor and mixer, and the first produced by Katherine Sarafian, who went on to produce Pixar's Brave released in 2012.

The short premiered on October 12, 2006, at the 42nd Chicago International Film Festival at Columbia College,[1][2] and was released theatrically and on home media with Pixar's Ratatouille (June 29, 2007).[3]


A young alien, Stu,[4] is inside a spacecraft taking an examination in alien abduction. He must snatch a sleeping farmer named Ernie[4] under the watchful eye of his impassive examiner, a gelatinous blob named Mr. B.[4] Working from memory, Stu is expected to use an array of thousands of identical unlabeled toggle switches for this purpose; Mr. B's stoic expression gives no hints of which ones to use.

Stu's hesitant flicks of the switches turn out to be wrong, causing Ernie to bump into the walls and ceiling, albeit without waking him up. As Stu grows increasingly frustrated, Stu yells and swipes randomly at the array. Ernie bounces randomly around the room like a pinball, knocking over the furniture in the process but remaining asleep. Eventually, after checking his notes, Stu does succeed in maneuvering Ernie out the window and up into the ship, but he shuts off the tractor beam without closing the cargo hatch. As Ernie plummets toward the ground, Mr. B takes over and catches him, then works the switches with incredible speed to put him back in his bed and clean up the mess created by Stu.

Dejected over his failure, Stu struggles to hold back tears. With a sigh, the sympathetic Mr. B allows him to launch the spaceship for the trip home. Stu cheerfully grabs the steering yoke and begins to maneuver; a moment later the ship slams to the ground, crushing Ernie's house. When it lifts off, its underside is covered with dirt and debris, and nothing is left of the house except a tall pillar of dirt in the center of a crater, cut out by the open cargo hatch. Atop this, Ernie is still sound asleep in bed.

As the end credits run, the sound of Ernie's alarm clock is heard, followed by his yawn, a scream and a thud – indicating that he has fallen into the crater.


"Lifted" was nominated for best animated short film on January 23, 2007 for the 79th Academy Awards.[5] It was also included in the Animation Show of Shows in 2006.

DVD release[edit]

Pixar included the film on the DVD release of Ratatouille and as part of Pixar Short Films Collection, Volume 1 in 2007.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Desowitz, Bill (September 25, 2006). "Gary Rydstrom's First Pixar Short to Debut at Chicago Fest". Animation World Network. Archived from the original on May 16, 2015. Retrieved May 16, 2015. 
  2. ^ "Pixar: An Afternoon With Gary Rydstrom". Chicago Film Festival. Archived from the original on February 17, 2007. Retrieved May 16, 2015. 
  3. ^ King, Susan (November 9, 2007). "'Ratatouille,' extras a feast for viewers with taste". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved May 16, 2015. 
  4. ^ a b c Jessen, Taylor (February 22, 2007). "2007's Oscar-Nominated Animated Shorts: Three Fords, a Vespa and a Kit Bike". Animation World Network. Retrieved May 16, 2015. 
  5. ^ Zoller Seitz, Matt (February 16, 2007). "Film in Review; The 2006 Academy Award-Nominated Short Films". The New York Times. Retrieved May 16, 2015. 

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Mater and the Ghostlight
Pixar Animation Studios short films
Succeeded by
Your Friend the Rat