MENU

Latest Posts

“Onward” – Title And Cast For 2020 Original Pixar Feature Announced

Dan Scanlon, Suburban Fantasy Film

Posted by Joanna • December 12, 2018

Pixar have announced the title for their next original feature releasing on March 6 2020 – Onward. 


Up to this point, Onward (which has been described as a ‘modern fantasy’ film), directed by Dan Scanlon (Monsters University) and produced by Kori Rae, has been under the working title “The Untitled Pixar Film That Takes You To A Suburban Fantasy World“. It was first announced at the 2017 D23, and takes place in a world where fantasy has almost become mundane. Chris Pratt and Tom Holland will play the teenage elf brothers who set out on a journey together in the hopes of rekindling magic and spending one last day with their late father.

Julia Louis-Dreyfus and Octavia Spencer have also been revealed as cast members. This isn’t Louis-Dreyfus’ first time lending her voice to a Pixar character – she voiced Princess Atta in A Bug’s Life way back in 1998!

The film is inspired by Scanlon’s own life and relationship with his brother – Scanlon’s father passed away when he was only a year old. Now that the title has officially been revealed, we can all look forward to more plot and character details being released.

Following the official release of the title, Pixar employees on Twitter have been expressing their excitement about working on the film. Pixar animator Austin Madison compared Onward to a Tolkien story, suggesting that this is a kind of fantasy that the studio has never explored before.

If you’ve ever wondered what it would be like if John Hughes directed a Tolkien story, you may want to join our quest.

Tolkien stories tend to have epic journeys, incredible amounts of lore, strong bonds between characters, and a lot of heart. We never knew that Pixar tackling a Tolkienesque fantasy feature was a thing that we needed, but this news has made the wait for Onward (or at least some more news on it) all the more excruciating.

Read article

Day & Night – The Pixar Short Of The Week

Day & Night, Pixar Short of the Week, Short Film, Shorts, Teddy Newton

Posted by Joanna • December 7, 2018

“Day & Night” is the much-loved Pixar short that played before Toy Story 3 in 2010, and it still stands as one of the most unique shorts in the studio’s history.

It explores the inspired 2D-3D world of Day and Night – two polar opposite characters with, to begin with, a total lack of empathy for each other. The short opens with a fully 3D animated scene, and the audience is lulled into a false sense of familiarity: Pixar does 3D animation! This is what we’ve all come to expect (the genius Ratatouille short “Your Friend the Rat” is a clear exception here, along with lots of creative credits scenes). This is where “Day & Night” hits us with the first of many clever surprises – this 3D world we’ve been looking at is all inside not one, but two 2D animated characters. Inside Day are sunny fields, bright mornings and singing birds, while inside Night are moonlit meadows, glinting stars and chirping crickets.

These two characters live in the same world – in fact, the entire short only uses a single camera – but the “Day & Night” crew managed to pull off this seamless day-night contrast between scenes inside each of the characters. They live in the same world, but they see it so differently. It’s only as they discover more about each other that they begin to see the beauty in their opposite’s perspective. This is such an important message – one that can apply to absolutely everyone who’s had the joy of watching the short.

There are so many things to appreciate about “Day & Night”: the particularly relevant message, the knitting together of wildly different animation techniques, the use of sound… Initially, director Teddy Newton wanted to use only natural sounds to create the soundtrack of the film, but eventually Michael Giacchino was enlisted to compose music for it too. The music was only used where music would naturally be – playing on a radio on the beach, or blasting out of Las Vegas casinos.

There are so many smart visual and audio gags in “Day and Night” – ducks quacking to mimic laughter, squeaky bicycle wheels to imitate Day rubbing his eyes. Here, Night is hanging off a cliff edge.

The finale to “Day & Night” is perhaps what sticks with people the most – Day and Night are distracted by a radio broadcast, which is a snippet from a Dr Wayne Dyer (author and motivational speaker) lecture.

“Fear of the unknown. They are afraid of new ideas. They are loaded with prejudices, not based upon anything in reality, but based on … if something is new, I reject it immediately because it’s frightening to me. What they do instead is just stay with the familiar. You know, to me, the most beautiful things in all the universe are the most mysterious.”

It’s after hearing this recording that Day and Night finally understand the beauty in one another’s world views – it’s people’s differences that make our world so full of wonder. A synchronised sunrise and sunset show that Day and Night may be very different, but it’s still possible to connect with one another.

In the commentary for “Day & Night” from director Teddy Newton and Camera Polisher and Stereographer Sandra Karpman, Newton comments on the fact that many viewers’ favourite part is when Day and Night almost seem to become each other and switch places. He explains that they don’t turn into each other. “They’re still who they are. They’re still the same person. It’s just that the thing inside them has changed. They come out of the experience seeing the world in a new way, empathising with the other’s world view.”

That’s a pretty brilliant message to be putting out there.

Some fun facts:

  • Director Teddy Newton would hear this recording of Dr Wayne Dyer while he was growing up because his mother owned an audio recording of one of his lectures. He felt the quote so perfectly fit the theme of “Day & Night” and it couldn’t not be included.
  • Pixar treated Dr Wayne Dyer to a screening of “Day & Night” as a way of saying thank you.
  • Initially, Newton came up with the idea of a keyhole character with the 3D world inside it. In the end, he decided the characters needed to be more mobile to be able to tell a story, so the keyhole concept gradually evolved into the walking and (kind of) talking Day and Night characters that we see now.
  • Newton lent his voice to Chatter Telephone in Toy Story 3 and Mini Buzz in the Toy Story Toon “Small Fry”.

Read article

Woody’s Round Up 12/7/18

Disney Parks, Inside Out, Luxo, Jr., Round-Ups, Teddy Newton, Toy Story 4, Toy Story Land

Posted by Simoa • December 7, 2018

Welcome back to Woody’s Round Up! With all the speculation about Toy Story 4 and the excitement over the Annie and Golden Globe nominations for Incredibles 2, some other noteworthy happenings may have slipped your radar. But no worries, we’ve compiled a list here.

Jolly Holiday at Toy Story Land

Toy Story Land has been decorated just in time for Christmas and the holidays! I’m especially fond of this giant Hamm sugar cookie complete with Santa Hat:

Hope they’ll be selling edible versions in the park…

And check out these ornaments I definitely want on my tree at home!

You can see more of the decorations on the Disney Parks blog. Here’s a video of the decorations going up:

Light it Up Luxo

Pixar Pier at Disneyland also got a lovely addition in the form of animatronic Luxo Jr. atop the marquee. While the technology has not yet evolved for Luxo to bound off its perch and stomp anywhere (or on anything), it would be quite a treat to be welcomed by the energetic lamp to California Adventure. Watch Luxo in action below:

More photos at Laughing Place.

Tears of Candy Galore

Bing Bong’s Sweet Shop opened at Pixar Pier over the summer, and a new statue has been installed inside.

Bing Bong isn’t animatronic, but he does play audio from Inside Out, as reported by WDW News Today. I’m sure everyone who visits will be crying happy tears too! They just won’t taste as sweet.

Teddy Newton’s Sneaks

Teddy Newton, mastermind behind some of Pixar’s most brilliant story ideas and indelible artwork, as well as the director of ‘Day & Night’ will be directing his first feature length film! Although not a Pixar production, Sneaks is worth supporting. The official synopsis describes it as follows:

Sneaks centers on a group of misplaced sneakers that end up lost in New York City and must find a way to work together in order to get back to their “sole mates.”

The film will also be Ohio’s first animated feature, and Pixar production designer Ricky Nierva will also be part of the crew. It’s always wonderful to see Pixarians branching out, and we wish them both great success. Read more about Sneaks at THR.

Expanding Toy Story

A Toy Story 4 graphic novel anthology will be hitting shelves ahead of the film’s release next June. Released by Dark Horse comics in collaboration with Pixar, the anthology is available for preorder on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and comic book stores. More details and art will surface before the May 7th release date, so stay tuned for more!

Read article

Incredibles 2 Nominated for Golden Globe Award

Awards, Brad Bird, Golden Globes, Incredibles 2

Posted by Joanna • December 6, 2018

The nominations for Incredibles 2 keep rolling in – just after receiving 11 nominations at the Annie Awards, it has now been nominated for Best Animated Motion Picture at the 76th Annual Golden Globe Awards.

Incredibles 2 sits amongst fellow worthy nominees Isle of DogsMiraiRalph Breaks The Internet, and Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse.

The Golden Globe awards will air on January 6th, so we’ve just got a month until we find out the result! Regardless of the outcome, it’s great to see Incredibles 2 receiving so much praise – we’re beyond happy for the entire crew.

Following the nomination announcements, director Brad Bird revealed that he was initially worried the sequel wouldn’t prove as popular as the original – he was afraid superheroes wouldn’t be ‘in’ any more. (Ironic, given the fact that the new animated Spider-Man movie has also been nominated for best animated feature.) But he realised that Incredibles is more than a superhero movie – family is at the core of these films, even during those classic fight scenes.

“I thought, two years from now — because it takes a while to make these things — are people going to be sick of superheroes? But then I remembered that what drew me to the idea and made the idea appealing to me in the first place was that it was primarily a film about families — and they just happened to be superheroes. And to me, family is an endlessly fascinating subject because it’s in everyone’s lives.”

Read article

See All Posts