I was surprised to read that the final version of the Pixar movie Brave represented only 20% of the scenes that were created. That’s right, 80% of the scenes were deleted in order to create the best movie they could.
That’s a new version of the 80/20 Rule (that says 20% of what you do gives you 80% of the value, and suggests putting more time and effort into that 20% for exponential rewards).
I don’t know whether those other scenes were fully animated or were just storyboarded; probably some were more fully developed than others before it was decided they didn’t fit.
The lessons I’d draw from this are:
- Don’t stop at “good,” keep going because you might hit “better” — if you create so much that you can discard 80% and have a great remainder, you’re on a good track
- Don’t be precious about your ideas or your more finished material
- Don’t judge material too soon—keep it all and decide later
- Discarding 80% of what you create can be a strength rather than a weakness
(For strategies for being more creative, see my book, CREATIVITY NOW, published by Pearson and available from Amazon or your other favorite bookseller.)