Friday, April 30, 2010

A Comprehensive List of Why 3D Should Go Away

Roger Ebert, like me, is thoroughly against the idea of 3D films. I have posted several times on the subject, and, although I don't want to appear as if I am ranting or whining, Mr. Ebert has released a great list of why 3D is so bad for the motion picture industry and audiences everywhere:

1. It's the waste of a dimension.
2. It adds nothing to the experience.
3. It can be a distraction.
4. It can create nausea and headaches.
5. Have you noticed that 3-D seems a little dim?
6. It's an excuse to buy new digital projectors.
7. Theaters slap on a surcharge of $5 to $7.50 for 3-D.
8. I cannot imagine a serious drama in 3-D (neither can I).
9. Whenever Hollywood has felt threatened, it has turned to technology to save the day.

Amen, brother! Check out a list of explanations for each of his excellent points at Newsweek.


Thursday, April 29, 2010

Keaton on 'TS3' and Ken

Briefly: The LA Times has a very short article out in which they ask Michael Keaton several questions regarding his role of Ken in Toy Story 3. Among other things, he discusses how it's hard to keep a straight face when talking about such an eccentric character. From what I've heard, Ken is a really, really funny character.

Read all three questions and answers with Keaton here.

Source: The Pixar Blog


Monday, April 26, 2010

Vintage Lotso Commercials

I have always been a fan of viral marketing. It adds a whole new dimension to the excitement that leads up to a highly-anticipated movie, and it feels as if you are sharing an inside joke with the director.

The above videos are viral marketing for Toy Story 3 in the form of "vintage" commercials for the Lotso Huggin' Bear from 1983.

Initially, I thought it was an actual vintage toy, but quickly changed my mind. First of all, unlike the other new toys (Chatter Telephone, Ken, etc.), no one has yet to mention the existence of a Lotso Huggin' Bear. Also, the YouTube user MrCrazycommercials has a video that was linked to by Lee Unkrich only three days before the Lotso commercial went live. There is no way that that is a coincidence.

This is awesome viral marketing. It is believable, funny, and gets me excited about Toy Story 3. It is very well-made and convincing; the details, such as the VHS-quality and cheesy 80's music definitely add to the commercial's effect.

The Lotso Huggin' Bear is available for pre-order at Toy Story 3 will come out in theaters on June 18.


Thursday, April 22, 2010

Breaking: 'Monsters, Inc.' Sequel Confirmed

Variety has just announced that Disney will release Pixar's long-anticipated Monsters, Inc. sequel on November 16, 2012. Pete Docter will work on it but won't direct since he is working on an original feature. The film will, of course, star John Goodman and Billy Crystal. That's all we know for now.

While I prefer that Pixar does original material, I am looking forward to a sequel to my favorite Pixar film of all time.

I'll keep you updated as this very exciting news develops!

Rich Ross also announced that the upcoming Pixar feature Brave (formerly The Bear and The Bow) will be released on June 15, 2012. It is very rare that Pixar would release two films in the same year, but, there it is. And I can't wait.

(The above photo is unofficial, and the title is currently unknown.)

Source: Variety


Saturday, April 10, 2010

Link Roundup: 3D Pirates, 'Mission: Incredible,' and More

There has been a recent flood of Disney- and Pixar-related news, so I've decided to do a brief post composed of links to send you off to consume all of the latest and greatest news from the world of Disney.

First, Blue Sky Disney is reporting that the new Pirates film, On Stranger Tides, will be filmed and released in 3D. This is not very surprising, since almost all tentpole films for the near future are being released in 3D. I'm not a big fan, but that's what seems to be happening...

Next, Blue Sky is providing further speculation regarding Brad Bird's live-action directorial debut on the next installment of Mission: Impossible. I can only hope that he's right; I would love to see Bird take on a big budget, live-action film.

While we're on the Pixar side of things, the summer issue of D23 will feature three different Toy Story 3 covers, with Buzz, Woody, or Jessie. The magazine will also "take readers to the sets and story rooms where Toy Story 3 was created".

Finally, watch this clip from Toy Story 3. It is an extended scene from the trailer of when Barbie meets Ken.


Pixar's Secret Dinosaur Project Revealed

Since Pixar is such a wonderful studio, there is always a lot of speculation regarding their future releases. When the above photo of some Dinosaur concept art was discovered on the Up special features, everybody wanted to know what Pixar was possibly doing with dinosaurs. Perhaps it was the short attached to Toy Story 3. Maybe it was Pete Docter's upcoming feature. Nobody knew, but, finally, we all do.

Disney and Pixar will be teaming up with the Discovery Channel for a TV special entitled Reign of the Dinosaurs. It is being produced by "top creative talent at Disney and Pixar," and will focus both on teaching about the dinosaur world and the latest in paleontological research while telling Pixar-quality stories. Here's the official description:

New creatures abound in a wondrous new world – giant dinos with Freddy Krueger style clawed hands, pygmy T-rex, frogs so big they can eat dinosaurs. Learn the latest in understanding of dinosaur behaviors with exotic mating dances, the inner workings of the T-rex’s nuclear family, dinosaurs drunk on fermenting fruit, dinosaurs in apocalyptic events, the underwater birthing of mosasaurs, and prehistory’s angriest mammals.
This is great news. I have always loved dinosaurs, and am very interested to see what Pixar will do with the prehistoric world. The special will air during the 2010/2011 TV season.

Stay tuned for more details...


Sunday, April 4, 2010

'Toy Story 3' at WonderCon 2010

WonderCon was held in San Francisco on Saturday, and Toy Story 3, it could be said, was at the heart of it. On hand to take part in a 'TS3' panel were director Lee Unkrich, producer Darla K. Anderson, and voice talents John Ratzenberger (Hamm), Kristen Schaal (Trixie), and Jeff Garlin (Buttercup). At this panel, audiences were treated to clips from the film, as well as scenes acted out by the actors.

Check out some photos below from the event:

Source: The Pixar Blog


Happy Easter from Disney, Etc. and The Muppets

Happy Easter! Enjoy the above video, courtesy of The Muppets. I am very glad that they are finally getting back to some dark humor. Good stuff. Enjoy.


Friday, April 2, 2010

100 Pixar Characters to Scale

On his blog, Juan Pablo Bravo is showcasing his "infographic showing 100 Pixar characters with their estimated sizes."

In other words, a Chilean designer created 100 Pixar characters' silhouettes to scale.

Not only that, but the characters are grouped by film, and go in order by when they were released. All of your favorite characters are there, from Wally B. to Lotso the Bear.

This is a very cool idea that has been executed impeccably. Well done, Mr. Bravo.

For a very high res version, go here.

Oh, and by the way, I think this would make quite the desktop wallpaper.


Tweets of the Day: Talking Chimps and Iron Men

I've never been a huge fan of Twitter, but as more and more Disney and Pixar folks get Twitter accounts, the more valuable a resource it becomes. That's why I'm starting a new feature of Disney, etc., where I'll share the best Disney-, Pixar-, and movie-related tweets with you.

My favorite so far is from yesterday and is by Toy Story 3 director Lee Unkrich:

Many people have been asking what my next project is after Toy Story 3. I can finally reveal: a 100% motion-capture Lancelot Link movie.
I'm sure that he's joking, but it's still really funny. If you don't know what Lancelot Link is, watch the embedded video below. In my opinion, Lancelot Link, Secret Chimp is possibly the best TV show to ever air. Ever. It's so great due to it's campiness, and the simple fact that it is full of talking, costumed chimps. And adding the motion-capture detail makes the tweet all the more funny. We can all hope that Mr. Unkrich isn't joking...

The next-best tweet is by Iron Man 2 director Jon Favreau:
Iron Man 2 is signed, sealed, delivered!
While not as funny as Unkrich's tweet, this is exciting news. Iron Man 2, which will be released on May 7 of this year, is officially completed! I loved the first Iron Man, and can't wait to see the new one.

Those are all of the amusing and exciting tweets that I've seen recently. As I said before, no matter how against the idea of Twitter you are, it has a wealth of information that you can't find anywhere else. I hope you have enjoyed this edition of Tweets of the Day.


Thursday, April 1, 2010

Selick's Back on Team Disney

Henry Selick is the king of stop-motion animation. In my opinion, stop-motion is a greatly underrated art form. Nothing can match the classic, unique look of a claymation picture, and Selick is the best at 'em (perhaps, with the exception of Nick Park). Selick has directed the great stop-motion films of our age: The Nightmare Before Christmas, James and the Giant Peach, and, most recently, Coraline.

He produced those first two pictures under the Disney banner, and now, after an almost decade-long hiatus, will direct more features for the Mouse. Henry Selick will be stationed at Pixar in Emeryville while he works on these films, but there isn't any word on whether these films will be released under the Disney or Pixar name. But, obviously, the creatives at Pixar will certainly lend a hand on his productions.

This is great news. I love stop-motion animation, and Henry Selick is a true genius at it. I cannot wait to see what he comes up with, especially since he'll have the guys at Pixar helping him out. What a combination of creative power...

Source: Variety