Brenda Chapman Lima is a staff member of Pixar.
A native of the state of Illinois, Chapman's interest in animation as a teenager led her to study and then at the California Institute of the Arts (CalArts). During her summer breaks, she began her professional career working in syndicated television animation. After graduating with a BFA in Character Animation, she was a story trainee on Disney's successful animated film The Little Mermaid. She later served as head of story another Disney film, The Lion King, overseeing both the writers and the artists on the project.
Chapman also worked in story and development for other Disney animated films such as The Rescuers Down Under, Beauty and the Beast and The Hunchback of Notre Dame. She joined DreamWorks Animation at its inception in the fall of 1994, but is now working at Pixar where she is currently developing her first animated feature as a director.
Chapman is only the third woman ever to direct an animated film (Lotte Reiniger of The Adventures of Prince Achmed, and Arna Selznick of The Care Bears Movie, came before her).
She is married to husband Kevin Lima, a member of the Disney Studios.
During her career, she also participated in the production of Who Framed Roger Rabbit (from Disney's Touchstone subsidiary), as well as DreamWorks' Chicken Run and she was one of three directors who worked on 1998's The Prince of Egypt (along with Steve Hickner and Simon Wells).
She is a co-writer of the film Cars and also of the upcoming Pixar film Up (2009 film).