Friday, 9 August 2013

D23 Expo 2013 | Pixar


As you're probably aware, D23 Expo is this weekend. AKA yet another huge event in California I can't go to. *Sigh...* Anyway, a few hours ago Pixar had their portion of the presentation. And seeing as Pixar are (rather obviously) my favourite animation studio, I'm only going to talk about their presentation.

Pixar's portion started off with Lasseter coming out onto the stage to roaring applause and a standing ovation. Ofcourse, wearing no less than a Hawaiian shirt. But not just any Hawaiian shirt. A special, Monsters University Hawaiian shirt. Oh yeah.
"A studio is not the building it's in. It's the filmmakers inside that make up a studio. And we're all inspired by one person: Walt Disney."
- John Lasseter (D23 Expo)
 Now, I'd just like to point out how Lasseter said that he is inspired by Walt Disney (understandably). One of Disney's actual colleagues (Joe Grant) compared Lasseter to Disney. Infact, claiming him to be an image of Walt.
“You had, such a remarkable man in Disney, with the great intuition that he had. He seemed to know everything ahead of time. I find the same thing there with Lasseter, he's pretty much a... an image of Walt.”
- Joe Grant (The Pixar Story) 
Back to the event. Bill Hader (the voice actor of the slug in Monsters University that "can't be late for class on the first day".) joined Lasseter on the stage to announce an upcoming short film - Party Central, which will debut in cinemas/theatres before The Good Dinosaur next year. It's apparently Mike and Sully returning to party with the Oozma Kappas. I'm not sure on the time period though. I have a feeling it's between Monsters University and Monsters Inc though.

Then, The Good Dinosaur's teaser was shown, aswell as concept art. I've been looking forward to The Good Dinosaur for about 6 months now - since I found out about it. I've loved dinosaurs since I was a child, and this film combined 3 of my favourite things: dinosaurs, animation and Pixar. It's essentially, what would happen if the dinosaurs never died, and lived alongside humans. Some dinosaurs included are going to be Ankylosaurus and Parasaurolophus - the main character is an Apatosaurus. All the dinosaurs are going to be farmers, each functioning as actual farming equipment. The cast has also been announced:

  • Arlo (Main character): Lucas Neff
  • Spot (Human): Unknown/Unvoiced
  • Poppa: John Lithglow
  • Momma: Frances McDormand
  • Cliff: Neil Patrick Harris
  • Forrest: Bill Hader
  • Ivy: Judy Greer
The last 3 are Arlo's siblings. That's right. Neil Patrick Harris. I think I've just fell even more in love with this film. Also, another film with Bill Hader in (the slug from Monsters University again).

Peter Sciretta from SlashFilm tweeted:
"Pixar's Good Dinosaur first footage looked very beautiful, not very cartoony, almost like a segment from Fantasia."
 It has been confirmed that Arlo befriends a caveman named Spot - the first human he's ever seen.

Then, they started talking about Inside Out, another one that I'm quite excited about. And actually includes another one of my favourite things! Pete Docter's head. If you don't know anything about it, basically, it's a story being told from the inside of a little girl's mind.
"This is one of the most unique films I've ever been associated with."
- John Lasseter 
It has been revealed that the child is a young blond girl named Riley who loves Hockey and is being forced (presumably) by her parents to move to San Francisco. Which, can I just point, is highly convenient for Pixar - with their studio being within driving distance of San Francisco. However, the main setting it actually inside Riley's brain.

Also, Riley is not the main character either. The main characters are the emotions inside her mind. They were originally going to be solid, bodied characters, distinguishable as different emotions by their colour. This idea has been scrapped and now the characters are going to be a kind of 'collection' of orbs that move around in a way that suits the emotion. The emotions work in a headquarters of sort, watching everything Riley sees from a screen.
"To really reach an audience, there needs to be some truth in a film."
- Pete Docter 
Again, the cast has been released:

  • Joy (Main Character): Amy Poehler
  • Anger: Lewis Black
  • Fear: Bill Hader
  • Sadness: Phyllis Smith
  • Disgust: Mindy Kaling
Bill Hader appears to be beginning a love affair with Pixar...

Onto Finding Dory. Basically, it's going to take place a year after Finding Nemo and it's about Dory trying to find her parents. That's basically it. Nothing else. Except there's a whale called Baily.

And the cast list.

  • Dory: Ellen DeGeneres
  • Marlin: Albert Brooks
  • Jenny (Dory's Mother): Diane Keaton
  • Charlie (Dory's Father): Eugene Levy
  • Baily the Beluga Whale: Ty Burrel
Hader had managed to sneak onto stage by this point and began making jokes about how if he's in any more films he could be Pixar's lucky charm. At which point John Ratzenberger (who's been in all 14 of Pixar's films) came onto the stage, followed by a marching band, glitter cannons and confetti, claiming himself to be Pixar's lucky charm. Then he explained to Hader how to be a lucky charm. Andrew Stanton made it clear that Hader is NOT in Finding Dory. Then, Ratzenberger and Hader walked off the stage to You've Got A Friend In Me.

This is why I love Pixar.

All they do is just mess around.

And they SOMEHOW get the job done. Perfectly.

And get to #1 in the box office.

14 times in a row.

Even with Cars 2.

Anyway, finally, was Toy Story of Terror. A 30 minute TV Halloween special which will air on the 16th October on ABC.

And that's it. Then they moved onto Disney talking about Frozen. But I won't be talking about that.

Thanks for reading!

- Jake

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