Pixar’s film Toy Story 2 was an undeniable hit in one of the most popular children’s movies ever. However, many fans of the film might not know is it the flick was actually deleted twice during production. One of the deletes was an accident by a rogue command, and the second was on purpose because “it was not a good film.” The accidental deletion was discovered by Pixar’s Larry Cutler.
Apparently, he was in the directory working on a fix for Woody’s hat that had 40 files to begin with. When he looked away and looked, back the directory had four files. Cutler says he grabbed the phone and told coworkers to “unplug the machine” when files were being deleted. I can only imagine how sickening it must’ve felt the see months of work being deleted in front of your eyes, only to find out your backups may not be actually backing up.
You can check out the YouTube video (animated naturally) to see the reaction yourself. The files are later recovered with equal amounts hard work and luck. The accidental deletion apparently happened thanks to something along the lines of an “rm -r -f *” command that tells the server to delete all files in a subdirectory. The catch was that command was accidentally executed in the root directory for the Toy Story 2 project. The luck came in that the supervising technical director for the film happen to be working from home and have a older copy of the movie on her computer.