Inside Out Q&A with Co-Writer Meg LeFauve

Meg LeFauve Inside Out
Inside Out co-writer Meg LeFauve with Backstory Podcast host Jeff Goldsmith

Meg LeFauve Co-writer of Inside Out at L.A. Film School

The Los Angeles Film School is proud to have hosted a screening of the Disney Pixar animated film, Inside Out, followed by a Q&A with Jeff Goldsmith and Co-Writer Meg LeFauve. During their conversation, Meg elaborated on her writing style, original concepts for the film, and her origins as a studio executive.

On her educational beginnings:

“I went to film school, and also majored in English.”

On outlining being a part of her workflow:

“For me, outlining is a key part of my process.”

Regarding the role of Riley:

“We wanted Riley to be a part of a team, and chose hockey to be her sport.”

The process of making an animated film can be time consuming and intense. Meg recalls

“The film took 5 years to make.”

Each of Riley’s emotions in Inside Out is based on shapes, Meg explains:

“Character’s colors and shapes are based on their emotions. Disgust is broccoli, anger is a brick, and sadness is a teardrop.”

LeFauve was far from the first person to begin working on Inside Out for Pixar

“When I came onto the movie, there were 100 people already working on the movie.”

Meg began her career working for the ICM talent agency, and recalls doing plenty of script coverage on the job.

“Writing coverage teaches you a lot about good screenwriting.”

Searching for motivation and emotional resonance is a key element in LeFauve’s writing strategy. She discloses a reminder that she uses while writing:

“When writing, always ask, ‘why do I care?'”

“what are the stakes? what is the prize? You need to ask these questions.”

When asked about continuing to write quality content on a fast-paced schedule, Meg LeFauve offers up some insight:

“The well will not run dry. You have a lot of good ideas.”

Special thanks to Meg LeFauve and Jeff Goldsmith for the excellent Q&A. Meg LeFauve’s latest film, The Good Dinosaur, stomps into theaters on November 25th, 2015. She is currently working on the Marvel film, Captain Marvel. 

You can listen to Jeff Goldsmith’s interview with Meg LeFauve on his podcast, The Q&A with Jeff Goldsmith. Listen to it here.