Tag Archives: Disney

Disney’s first Polynesian princess is ‘Moana’

Looks like Disney’s got another winner up its sleeve! Following ZootopiaBig Hero 6, and Frozen is Moana, the first Disney film to star a Polynesian princess. 16-year-old Moana, voiced by newcomer Auli’i Cravalho, is about to embark on an exciting adventure of self-discovery across the vast Pacific. The official logline reads:

From Walt Disney Animation Studios comes “Moana,” a sweeping, CG-animated feature film about an adventurous teenager who sails out on a daring mission to save her people. During her journey, Moana (voice of Auli’i Cravalho) meets the once-mighty demigod Maui (voice of Dwayne Johnson), who guides her in her quest to become a master wayfinder. Together, they sail across the open ocean on an action-packed voyage, encountering enormous monsters and impossible odds, and along the way, Moana fulfills the ancient quest of her ancestors and discovers the one thing she’s always sought: her own identity.

This is merely a teaser trailer, and it already looks and sounds great. Moana is directed by the filmmaking team of Ron Clements and John Musker, the same duo behind such Disney classics as The Little Mermaid and Aladdin. Original music and score is provided by Opetaia Foa’i, Mark Mancina (The Lion King), and Lin-Manuel Miranda (Hamilton). The song featured here sounds a little familiar, does it not?

Can’t wait to see more from this project. Moana splashes into theatres November 23, Thanksgiving Day. READ MORE Disney’s first Polynesian princess is ‘Moana’

‘Star Wars’ spinoff ‘Rogue One’ teaser trailer arrives

UPDATE (4/7): As promised, here is the first teaser trailer for Rogue One! It debuted on Good Morning America this morning, and it packs quite the punch even for a one-minute forty-second tease. John Williams’ iconic score has a new edge here, blending his classic keys with something entirely new. It introduces Felicity Jones’ character, who we now know is named Jyn Erso. “This is a rebellion, isn’t it? I rebel,” she says and just like that she immediately wins the hearts of Star Wars fans everywhere. Ben Mendelsohn looks to be channeling his inner evil he commands so well (see Bloodline) as an Imperial villain, and Forest Whitaker comes to Jyn’s aid in stealing the Death Star plans with a warning: “If you continue to fight, what will you become?” Also, be on the lookout for exciting callbacks to the original trilogy; Mon Mothma and the AT-ATs are back, and is that The Emperor underneath a black robe? Enjoy!

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story hits theatres December 16, 2016. The initial teaser for the teaser has been moved under the fold.

PREVIOUS (4/6): Yes, it’s a teaser for a teaser but… STAR WARS! Tomorrow Disney drops the first official teaser trailer for the Star Wars spinoff movie, Rogue One. To get your blood pumping, the studio’s released this 10-second teaser of the teaser and even it cannot disappoint. You’ll hear TIE Fighters whizzing, you’ll catch a glimpse of a stormtrooper dressed in all-black armor, and that’s pretty much it! Just enough to raise the hairs on every Star Wars fanboy and fangirl out there who are surely still high off The Force Awakens. Be sure to check back here Thursday morning for the full teaser.

So here’s what we know so far about Rogue One. READ MORE ‘Star Wars’ spinoff ‘Rogue One’ teaser trailer arrives

It’s official: Disney’s ‘Frozen’ is coming to Broadway in 2018

Step aside, Aladdin and The Lion King. A new Disney musical is coming to town and it’s primed to be a guaranteed sensation. Today, Disney Theatrical Productions made it official: Frozen is making its long-anticipated bow on Broadway in Spring 2018. It will be based on the original movie and not the in-the-works sequel. Fans of the critically acclaimed animated film will surely revel in the fact that Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez–composers of the the movie’s classic tunes–are leading the musical’s creative team. The dynamic husband-and-wife duo, who previously worked on Broadway musicals Avenue Q and The Book of Mormon, will adapt the Frozen songs you know and love (“Let It Go“, and so on) for the stage; additionally, they are currently concocting brand new songs that will feature exclusively in the musical. Also coming over from the movie to collaborate on the musical is Frozen‘s screenwriter and co-director Jennifer Lee; she’s penning the performance’s book.

The rest of Frozen: The Broadway Musical‘s creative team is dominated by Tony Award winners and nominees including director Alex Timbers (Amazon’s Mozart in the Jungle), choreographer Peter Darling (Billy Elliot), scenic and costume designer Bob Crowley (Mary Poppins), lighting designer Natasha Katz (Aladdin), sound designer Peter Hylenski (Motown), and music supervisor Stephen Oremus (Wicked).

Performance dates, the venue, and the cast have yet to be finalized. First things first, though; an out-of-town tryout performance will play in summer 2017. Do you think you’d have what it takes to channel Idina Menzel, Kristen Bell, Josh Gad, and Jonathan Groff under the bright lights of Broadway? Stay tuned for details as they come!

[Via Disney; Playbill]

What if Tim Burton directed Disney’s classic movies?

That’s the question Russian artist Andrew Tarusov asked himself before putting pen to paper to produce this portfolio of gothic takes on classic Disney films. It’s always interesting to see artist’s renditions of cartoon characters with a Tim Burton twist, and this attempt is no less inspiring.

“I love how Burton’s style looks vintage, chic, and cute all at the same time,” Tarusov told HelloGiggles. “His work is often marketed as ‘horror’ movies, but at the same time, it’s not a horror… It could be any genre.”

Dive into the gallery below to see ten Disney movies reimagined if the shadowy mind behind The Nightmare Before Christmas and Coraline had his way with them. You may never look at Pinocchio and Dumbo–my personal favorites here–the same way again!

Dory swims back to theatres this summer in ‘Finding Nemo’ sequel

Here’s a first look at Disney & Pixar’s sequel Finding Dory. It picks up six months after the events of 2003’s Finding Nemo and it explores the origin story of everyone’s favorite forgetful blue tang fish, Dory (voiced by Ellen DeGeneres). Instead of getting lost like Nemo does in the original, in the sequel Dory and friends (including clownfish Nemo and Nemo’s father Marlin) go on an adventure in search of answers about her past. Along the way we’ll discover Dory’s parents (voiced by Diane Keaton and Eugene Levy) and we’ll find out where she learned to speak Whale. The first teaser trailer, embedded above, is a slice of nostalgia as it instantly transports you back to the animated blue ocean we all fell in love with in ’03.

Andrew Stanton returns as director. Filling out the star-studded voice cast are Albert Brooks, Ed O’Neill, Kaitlin Olson, and Ty Burrell.

Finding Dory swims into theatres June 17, 2016. Pop after the break to view the initial theatrical poster. READ MORE Dory swims back to theatres this summer in ‘Finding Nemo’ sequel

Disney brings ‘The Jungle Book’ to life in live-action adaptation of Rudyard Kipling’s classic

Following Kenneth Branagh’s Cinderella, Disney continues to pump out live-action adaptations of its classic animated films and next up is The Jungle Book. Still based on Rudyard Kipling’s book, the new Jungle Book deviates from its 1967 animated adaptation by involving a real human boy playing Mowgli–newcomer Neel Sethi–and blending live-action with photorealistic CGI animals and environments. The differences don’t stop there. Iron Man helmer Jon Favreau takes the timeless tale into a more heightened direction; danger lurks around every corner in this teaser trailer. If you’ve seen Her, there’s no mistaking the voice of Indian python Kaa, seductively played by Scarlett Johansson. She narrates the action-packed teaser. The preview ends on a nostalgic note–free-spirited bear Baloo (voiced by Bill Murray) whistles “The Bare Necessities” as Mowlgi rides on his stomach down a river. The rest of the stellar voice cast is listed below inside the movie’s official synopsis:

“The Jungle Book” is an all-new live-action epic adventure about Mowgli (newcomer Neel Sethi), a man-cub who’s been raised by a family of wolves. But Mowgli finds he is no longer welcome in the jungle when fearsome tiger Shere Khan (voice of Idris Elba), who bears the scars of Man, promises to eliminate what he sees as a threat. Urged to abandon the only home he’s ever known, Mowgli embarks on a captivating journey of self-discovery, guided by panther-turned-stern mentor Bagheera (voice of Ben Kingsley), and the free-spirited bear Baloo (voice of Bill Murray). Along the way, Mowgli encounters jungle creatures who don’t exactly have his best interests at heart, including Kaa (voice of Scarlett Johansson), a python whose seductive voice and gaze hypnotizes the man-cub, and the smooth-talking King Louie (voice of Christopher Walken), who tries to coerce Mowgli into giving up the secret to the elusive and deadly red flower: fire. The all-star cast also includes Lupita Nyong’o as the voice of the fiercely protective mother wolf Raksha, and Giancarlo Esposito as the voice of wolf pack’s alpha male Akela.

The Jungle Book hits theatres in 3D on April 15, 2016.

‘Star Wars’ @ D23: ‘Rogue One’ cast, ‘Episode IX’ director, theme park lands, ‘Force Awakens’ poster & more!

This weekend, Disney hosted its fourth D23 Expo in Anaheim, California celebrating all things Disney, Pixar, and the like. Saturday was dedicated to Star Wars and man oh man were fans in for a treat. With The Force Awakens opening this holiday season, Disney and Lucasfilm are ramping up anticipation for the massive return to George Lucas’ timeless creation. At D23, many exciting announcements were made regarding Rogue OneEpisode IX, and new theme park attractions.

It’s all packed inside, so what are you waiting for? Dive in! READ MORE ‘Star Wars’ @ D23: ‘Rogue One’ cast, ‘Episode IX’ director, theme park lands, ‘Force Awakens’ poster & more!

Pixar forgoes dialogue to set the mood in its next adventure ‘The Good Dinosaur’

Disney and Pixar pick up right where they left off in this first official trailer for the upcoming animated pic The Good Dinosaur. The June teaser ended with a heartwarming glimpse at a green dinosaur and his pet human (more on that in a second), and the new trailer comes to life with an elevated sense of discovery, trepidation, and adventure.

The Good Dinosaur asks this question: What if the asteroid that forever changed life on Earth missed the planet completely and giant dinosaurs never became extinct? The film follows an Apatosaurus named Arlo and Spot the cave-boy. Director Peter Sohn, a Pixar Story Artist who previously worked on films such as Finding Nemo and Up!, describes Dino as a boy-and-his-dog story, except here the roles are reversed. “Arlo himself is what we would have become, able to articulate and have certain emotions and connection to family,” says Sohn. [The dinosaurs have] become us, essentially… I’m trying to treat Spot in a very kind of animalistic way, where he doesn’t speak very much. He’s very feral.”

You’ll notice the trailer barely includes any dialogue, besides a few grunts and growls. Featured prominently is the song “Crystals” by Of Monsters and Men, a sweet tune that succinctly sets the mood for Pixar’s latest adventure. I say, who needs dialogue in a trailer that so magically brings to life an alternate reality ruled by dinosaurs; the animation here is incredibly life-like at times and pushes CGI to new limits. What say you?

The Good Dinosaur hits theatres November 25.

Pixar imagines a world where dinos rule in next animated pic ‘The Good Dinosaur’

Inside Out hasn’t even hit theatres yet (June 19 where are you?!) and Pixar is already readying audiences for its next animated flick, The Good Dinosaur. A basic teaser trailer came out today and it begs the question: What if the asteroid that forever changed life on Earth missed the planet completely and giant dinosaurs never became extinct? That’s what Pixar is pitching with The Good Dinosaur, which stars Arlo the Apatosaurus (voiced by Raising Hope‘s Lucas Neff) and his small human cave-boy friend Spot.

In an interview with Yahoo, director Peter Sohn–who last helmed Ponyo and served as a Story Artist on other Pixar films like Up!Wall-ERatatouilleThe Incredibles, and Finding Nemo–describes the film as a boy-and-his-dog story, except here the roles are reversed. “Arlo himself is what we would have become, able to articulate and have certain emotions and connection to family,” says Sohn. [The dinosaurs have] become us, essentially… I’m trying to treat Spot in a very kind of animalistic way, where he doesn’t speak very much. He’s very feral.”

While traveling through a harsh and mysterious landscape, Arlo learns the power of confronting his fears and discovers what he is truly capable of. The teaser does little in the way of expanding upon this general logline; it does, however, successfully set up breathtaking landscapes and it leaves you with Pixar’s signature warmth at the end. That heartwarming dino-human print is featured on the first official poster for the movie and it hangs after the break.

The Good Dinosaur roars into theatres November 25.

Update (6/12): The Good Dinosaur‘s voice cast is undergoing major changes. Lucas Neff is out and child actor Raymond Ochoa (Mars Needs Moms) is in to voice Arlo the Apatosaurus. Deadline reports the rest of the new cast: “Jeffrey Wright as Arlo’s dad, Poppa; Steve Zahn as a pterodactyl named Thunderclap; AJ Buckley as Nash, a T-rex; Anna Paquin as Ramsey the T-rex; Sam Elliott as a tough T-rex named Butch and Marcus Scribner as Arlo’s brother Buck.” READ MORE Pixar imagines a world where dinos rule in next animated pic ‘The Good Dinosaur’

Disney unplugs from The Grid, scraps ‘Tron 3’

Sour news for Tron: Legacy fans: The Hollywood Reporter says that Disney is opting not to move forward with a threequel. In April 2009Legacy directer Joseph Kosinski shared his enthusiasm for making another Tron: “For us, the storytelling will be easier because we won’t be saddled with 28 years of backstory. From a technical standpoint, in order for it to be a Tron movie, we’re going to have to push the envelope.” Unfortunately, none of this will come to fruition.

Though Disney never technically greenlit a third Tron movie in the franchise that started in 1982, Kosinski had already broken a story and Legacy stars Garrett Hedlund and Olivia Wilde were set to reprise their roles. Additionally, THR reports that Disney was interested in bringing Jared Leto aboard for the new film, the 30 Seconds to Mars frontman-turned-actor who’s starring in Warner Bros.’s Suicide Squad as The Joker. It even had a name, Tron: Ascension. But again, these dreams have sadly turned to dust.

So why did this project suddenly go dark? Disney has yet to comment on the matter, but sources speculate that it has to do with the company’s underperforming Tomorrowland. The live-action futuristic action-adventure flick, which reportedly cost $180 million to make, grossed a low $33 million at the US box office.

As a vocal fan of the polarizing Legacy, I am saddened to hear that Disney is no longer interested in the flashy franchise. The original Tron pushed the envelope beyond its technological limits in terms of special effects, and its 2010 sequel upped the ante with incredibly slick visuals and a memorable score produced by Daft Punk. There’s certainly more tales from The Grid to tell, and I’ll sit here patiently as Disney receives fan backlash and petitions to #SaveTron.

Summer comes to a close when ‘Phineas and Ferb’ airs its finale in June

As a grown-up well into his 20s, it is without reservation that I say I’m going to miss the hell out of Disney’s animated musical comedy Phineas and Ferb. The Mickey Mouse company made it official that a mid-June installment of P&F–titled “Last Day of Summer”–will serve as the series finale. After 126 episodes, five one-hour specials, and the fantastic Disney Channel Original Movie Across the 2nd Dimension, the end of an era is upon us.

To celebrate our time spent with the inventive step brothers, Disney XD will air a massive 73-hour marathon showcasing every Phineas and Ferb episode to date, leading up to the super-sized one hour series finale. Mark your calendars: the binge begins Tuesday, June 9 at 8pm, and “Last Day of Summer” airs Friday, June 12 at 9pm on Disney Channel and Disney XD.

There’s 104 days of summer vacation then school comes along just to end it Is it the education system that will help Candace finally catch her siblings in the act and expose their oftentimes dangerous creations to their mom? That’s my theory, anyway. The official logline goes like this:

In the one-hour Phineas and Ferb episode titled “Last Day of Summer,” the summer season is coming to a close and it’s Candace’s last chance to bust her brothers. She is quickly foiled, but is presented with an opportunity to redo the day when she sets off Dr. Doofenshmirtz’s Do-Over-Inator, which results in other consequences like rips in the space-time continuum, the shortening of days and the disappearance of her brothers.

Now that sounds like a good time! No doubt P&F creators Dan Povenmire and Jeff “Swampy” Marsh are going to bow out on a creatively high note. So what’s next for the talented force behind the ‘toon? In tandem with marking the end for P&F, Disney formally announced Povenmire and Swampy’s next creation, Mikey Murphy’s Law. The new series will follow the fictional great-great-great-great-grandson of the Murphy’s Law namesake. The duo is taking a bunch of P&F contributors with them to their new show including Robert F. Hughes, story editor Scott Peterson, and staff writers Joshua Pruett, Dani Vetere, and Martin Olson. Mikey Murphy’s Law is set to debut on Disney XD in 2017.

“Dan and Swampy are two of the most respected and proven show creators in the animation series business,” said Disney XD exec Marc Buhaj in a statement. “They are incredibly gifted storytellers who have a track record of creating smart, original and relatable characters that are universally appealing to both kids and families.  It’s a coup for Disney XD to continue working with this talented duo on their latest creation ‘Mikey Murphy’s Law.’ We’re looking forward to another great creative partnership.”

It’s true: with Phineas and Ferb they, in fact, imagined Danville’s greatest invention of all–a universal comedy jam-packed with humor for children and grown-ups alike. The slick animation style, the vibrant color palate, the fun voices, the catchy tunes, the diabolical scheming (going to miss you, Doof!) weaved into playfully engaging stories. P&F took the simple idea of two tinkering brothers in their backyard and transformed it into one of the wittiest, smartest, hilarious, and heartfelt comedies of our generation. This all might sound a bit grandiose–it’s a Disney Channel animation sitcom, after all–but if you haven’t watched it before, I dare you to queue it up on Netflix and not get sucked in immediately.

Following the P&F series finale is a stand-alone one-hour special called The O.W.C.A. Files which follows Agent P and his angency animal pals. After that, the future is free of new brotherly adventures unless, of course, that long gestating movie comes to fruition! Fingers crossed.

Disney confirms ‘Star Wars’ stand-alone film, ‘Episode VIII’ & ‘Frozen’ sequel

Today, Disney chairman and CEO Bob Iger led a shareholder meeting and made some exciting announcements regarding a couple of his company’s most lucrative franchises.

Star Wars: The Force Awakens, directed by J.J. Abrams, is coming December 18–we all know this. Now what comes after? Details about the future of Star Wars just got a bit clearer. Sandwiched between Episode VII and its direct followup Episode VIII, Disney is releasing the first stand-alone Star Wars film. “Rogue One is the title for the first film in a unique series of big-screen adventures that explores the characters and events beyond the core Star Wars saga,” reads a press release. Gareth Edwards (GodzillaMonsters) is confirmed to direct Rogue One, and Chris Weitz (Cinderella, About a Boy, Antz) is penning the script. Felicity Jones (The Theory of Everything) will star. The idea for the stand-alone came from John Knoll, an Academy Award-winning visual effects supervisor and chief creative officer at Industrial Light & Magic (that’s the visual effects company created by George Lucas in 1975). Production on Rogue One begins this summer and it’s slotted to hit theatres December 16, 2016.

Iger went on to confirm that Rian Johnson (LooperBrickBreaking Bad) will direct Star Wars: Episode VIII, “which continues the saga after the events of Star Wars: The Force Awakens.” Ep8 releases May 26, 2017.

In other Disney-related news, Iger made an unsurprising but still incredibly exciting announcement about the future of Frozen. A sequel is most definitely in the works! Frozen co-directors Jennifer Lee and Chris Buck are working on the followup to the top-grossing animated film of all-time.

“We enjoyed making Frozen Fever so much and being back in that world with those characters,” said John Lasseter, Pixar chief creative officer. “Jennifer Lee and Chris Buck have come up with a great idea for a sequel and you will be hearing a lot more about it and we’re taking you back to Arendelle. We are so excited about that.”

That’s all there is to know for now. But now I bet you’re craving Frozen like Olaf craves summertime. Don’t fret–you can experience a brand new Frozen adventure starting tomorrow when the Pixar short Frozen Fever hits theatres; it’s playing in front of Disney’s new live-action Cinderella.