The next Disney-Pixar film in the works is the long-awaited sequel to 2003′s award-winning Finding Nemo. This time, moviegoers are Finding Dory, the friendly-but-forgetful blue tang fish voiced by Ellen DeGeneres. Nemo director Andrew Stanton returns with DeGeneres for the sequel. “There is no Dory without Ellen,” said Stanton in a press release. “She won the hearts of moviegoers all over the world—not to mention our team here at Pixar. One thing we couldn’t stop thinking about was why she was all alone in the ocean on the day she met Marlin. In Finding Dory, she will be reunited with her loved ones, learning a few things about the meaning of family along the way.”
Finding Dory takes place about a year after the first film, and features returning favorites Marlin, Nemo and the Tank Gang, among others. Set in part along the California coastline, the story also welcomes a host of new characters, including a few who will prove to be a very important part of Dory’s life. The remainder of the voice cast has not been confirmed, but who else except Albert Brooks could bring Marlin back to life?
DeGeneres also commented on the exciting news. “I have waited for this day for a long, long, long, long, long, long time,” the comic and talk show host said. “I’m not mad it took this long. I know the people at Pixar were busy creating Toy Story 16. But the time they took was worth it. The script is fantastic. And it has everything I loved about the first one: It’s got a lot of heart, it’s really funny, and the best part is—it’s got a lot more Dory.”
And get this: they’ve even set a date so mark your calendars accordingly. Finding Dory swims into theatres November 25, 2015.
Movie trailer round-up: ‘Carrie’, ‘The Conjuring’, ‘The Purge’, ‘The Great Gatsby’, ‘This Is The End’, ‘Planes’
Here’s the first full length trailer for the upcoming Carrie remake from director Kimberly Peirce starring Chloë Grace Moretz and Julianne Moore. You probably already know how this goes but, Carrie follows a sheltered high school girl who unleashes her newly developed telekinetic powers after she is pushed too far by her peers. The anticipated remake’s debut has been pushed to October 18.
Jump after the break for more trailers. (Click here for more…)
Mickey Mouse is making a comeback and in a big way. Disney’s mascot introduced himself to a new generation of kids in the Epic Mickey games and now he’s returning to his original medium in cartoon shorts. Nineteen brand-new cartoon shorts are releasing this summer and they will feature 2D animation that are reminiscent of the art direction and storytelling of Walt and his animators in the 1920s and 1930s. Each contemporary ‘toon finds Mickey in a different setting including Santa Monica, New York, Paris, Beijing, Tokyo, Venice and the Alps, facing a silly situation, a quick complication and an escalation of physical and visual gags. The Mouse will interact with his friends Minnie Mouse, Donald Duck, Daisy Duck, Goofy, and Pluto.
This exciting new Walt Disney Television Animation project is headed by executive producer and director Paul Rudish, the talented animator behind Dexter’s Laboratory and The Power Puff Girls. The shorts will roll out beginning June 28 on Disney Channel, Disney.com, and the company’s Watch Disney Channel app.
“By bringing Mickey’s comedic adventures to life with vitality, humor, inventiveness and charm, the entire Disney Television Animation team of artists, animators and directors have worked to capture the essence of what Walt Disney himself created 85 years ago,” said Disney Channels Worldwide President and Chief Creative Officer Gary Marsh in a statement.
A preview installment called “Croissant de Triomphe” is already up at Disney.com. The three-and-a-half minute ‘toon invites Mickey to Paris as he attempts to deliver a fresh batch of croissants to Minnie’s cafe. The short features fun, fast-paced action sequences, humor for all ages, an unexpected homage to a Disney classic, and obviously the animation style is beautiful and nostalgic. Watch it here.
A cute little animated short called Paperman played in front of Wreck-It-Ralph back when it was in theatres and now Disney Animation has released the six-and-a-half minute black-and-white clip for all the world to see. If you haven’t seen it yet, set aside that short amount of time and literally get swept away by this romantic tale that doesn’t require dialogue to get its whimsical and charming point across.
Hold on to your lightsabers. The house of Mouse is acquiring Geroge Lucas’ production company. In a deal that went down today, The Walt Disney Company agreed to acquire Lucasfilm Ltd. in a stock and cash transaction valued at $4.05 billion. In addition to acquiring Lucasfilm and all of its operating businesses including LucasArts, Industrial Light & Magic, and Skywalker Sound, Disney now also owns the rights to popular franchises like Indiana Jones and Star Wars.
In fact, what really shook people today is that Disney already has plans to expand the Star Wars universe by producing at least three more films in the saga. Kathleen Kennedy from Lucasfilm will transition into becoming the President of Lucasfilm and will report to Walt Disney Studios Chairman Alan Horn; at her post she will serve as brand manager for Star Wars and executive producer of future Star Wars films. Star Wars Episode 7 is being targeted with a 2015 release. Disney CEO and Chairman Robert Iger lays out the framework: “In 2015, we’re planning to release Star Wars Episode 7 – the first feature film under the “Disney-Lucasfilm” brand. That will be followed by Episodes 8 and 9 – and our long term plan is to release a new Star Wars feature film every two to three years.” In addition handpicking Kennedy to run Lucasfilm under Disney, Star Wars creator George Lucas will serve as creative consultant on future films.
In a press release, Lucas discussed his decision to sell his production company and how important it is to him that Star Wars continues on into the future. ”For the past 35 years, one of my greatest pleasures has been to see Star Wars passed from one generation to the next. It’s now time for me to pass Star Wars on to a new generation of filmmakers. I’ve always believed that Star Wars could live beyond me, and I thought it was important to set up the transition during my lifetime. I’m confident that with Lucasfilm under the leadership of Kathleen Kennedy, and having a new home within the Disney organization, Star Wars will certainly live on and flourish for many generations to come. Disney’s reach and experience give Lucasfilm the opportunity to blaze new trails in film, television, interactive media, theme parks, live entertainment, and consumer products.”
Production on Episode 7 is already in the early stages. Kennedy and Lucas are sitting down with writers and discussing the direction they want Star Wars to go next. Jump after the break to hear what they have to say on the matter.
Instant reactions to the news on Twitter are mixed. Some say they feel betrayed by Lucas for letting his prized franchise fall into different hands. Others express their sheer excitement and think it’s about time the franchise was injected with fresh ideas from new filmmakers. No matter where you stand, Disney’s purchase of Lucasfilm Ltd. is huge news–from the development of new propertied media to merchandising new collectable products–and the acquisition is sure conjure up major fanfare in the weeks, months, and years ahead.
Sam Raimi, the director of the Tobey Maguire Spider-Man trilogy, is back in Oz The Great and Powerful. In it he tells the fantastical origin story of The Wizard of Oz, a character originally invented by L. Frank Baum, the author of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. The story serves as a prequel to the famous 1939 film starring Judy Garland. A synopsis follows:
When Oscar Diggs (James Franco), a small-time circus magician with dubious ethics, is hurled away from dusty Kansas to the vibrant Land of Oz, he thinks he’s hit the jackpot–fame and fortune are his for the taking–that is until he meets three witches, Theodora (Mila Kunis), Evanora (Rachel Weisz) and Glinda (Michelle Williams), who are not convinced he is the great wizard everyone’s been expecting. Reluctantly drawn into the epic problems facing the Land of Oz and its inhabitants, Oscar must find out who is good and who is evil before it is too late. Putting his magical arts to use through illusion, ingenuity–and even a bit of wizardry–Oscar transforms himself not only into the great and powerful Wizard of Oz but into a better man as well.
Oz: The Great and Powerful opens March 8, 2013 in 3D.
Can’t wait any longer for the Tron sequel to get off the ground? This should hold you over. This June Disney is going to introduce the sci-fi animated series Tron: Uprising to its Disney XD programming slate. The events in the show take place in between the original 1982 movie and the recent Tron: Legacy. The protagonist Beck is voiced by Elijah Wood (The Lord of the Rings) and Emmanuelle Chriqui (Entourage), Mandy Moore, Paul Reubens (aka Pee-Wee Herman), Lance Henriksen (Aliens), and Tron‘s very own Bruce Boxleitner round out the stellar cast of voices. Tron: Legacy producer Sean Bailey is behind the series, along with Once Upon A Time and Lost‘s Edward Kitsis and Adam Horowitz. If you’re a fan of the Tron universe, this 10-part animated series is a must-see.
After giving The Lion King and Beauty and the Beast the three-dimensional treatment, Finding Nemo will become Disney’s next 3D re-release. Watch the trailer above. It’s out fall 2012.
This month the Disney Channel renewed is highly rated children’s animated series Phineas and Ferb for a fourth season. The pickup guarantees new episodes of the musically-inclined adventure series through the year 2014. I’m a sucker for kid’s programming that likes to acknowledge an older audience, so this is really great news. Though series creators Dan Povenmire and Jeff “Swampy” Marsh recently pushed out a made-for-TV Phineas and Ferb movie titled Across the 2nd Dimension, the ingenious duo are ready for an entirely new level of popularity. In August they signed a multi-year, multimillion-dollar deal with Disney Television Animation to develop a feature film based on the show. They are currently writing the script. Rumor has it that the movie will be a mix of live action and the animation viewers are used to. More on this as details surface. In addition to the movie attachment, the Disney deal also has Povenmire and Swampy imagining a new animated show for the Disney Channel, likely a spin-off series based in the Phineas and Ferb universe. According to a NYT article, it will follow the adventures of Isabella and the Fireside Girls. No word on when such a series will make it to air. Expect the movie to hit theatres summer 2013. Celebrate the news with some “Gitchee Gitchee Goo” as perfomed by Phineas and the Ferb-Tones featuring Candace after the break!
It’s official: a sequel to this summer’s blockbuster Thor is in the works. This shouldn’t really come as a surprise: the Marvel superhero flick has grossed $437.5 million thus far. Chris Hemsworth will reprise as the God of Thunder, but Kenneth Branagh will not return to helm. He is expected to remain on the team as a producer, though. The search for a new director is currently underway. Obviously a plot has yet to be fully mapped out, but if you waited until after the credits rolled at Thor (spoiler alert) then you’ll know that Loki is still around and I’m sure his existence will factor into the new story. In that same scene, Dr. Selvig is introduced to Samuel L. Jackson’s omnipresent Nick Fury so there’s plenty of material to expand upon in the future. Here’s some solid news: Disney confirms a July 26, 2013 release. The summer of ’13 is certainly one to anticipate; Robert Downey Jr. returns to the big screen in Iron Man 3 on May 3.
We knew they were coming… It’s time to meet The Muppets, circa 2011. Jason Segel stars in this modern-day take on Jim Henson’s 1976 creation. Flight of the Concords‘ James Bobin is at the helm and Nicholas Stoller co-wrote the script with Segal. The trailer plays out like a cheesy rom-com with Segal and Amy Adams, but the situation gets turned on its head a little more than halfway through. Enough talk, enjoy!
Disney’s The Muppets lands in theatres November 23, 2011.
Disney’s Imagineers have been working hard to retool the Florida theme park’s famous Haunted Mansion ride and now it’s finally ready for the public at large to experience the newly installed frights. If you’ve been on the ride before, you should know that in the ride’s final moments (spoiler alert) ghostly figures appear next to you in the Doom Buggy through the magic of mirroring. Disney decided to upgrade this portion of the ride by making things a bit more interactive. The hitchhiking ghosts referred to as Ezra, Gus, and Phineas not only appear in your cart but they can now rip off passengers’ heads, blow them up like one would with a balloon, and send it flying in the air and it eventually lands back on the shoulders of the unsuspecting passenger. Disney pulls off the neat trick in grand fashion and you can sneak a peek at it in the video above. Obviously little justice is served here, so you ought to check it out first-hand the next time you visit the Magic Kingdom.
This week Disney released a Tron: Legacy remix album containing remixes of the original movie tracks composed by Daft Punk. Though the electronic duo did not have a hand in putting together this re-release of sorts, many well-known artists contributed to it. The Glitch Mob’s fantastic remix of “Derezzed” is just one of the 15 tracks found on Reconfigured. Paul Oakenfold, The Crystal Method, Moby, Com Truise, and Pretty Lights also took turns at rehashing the original soundtrack. Full tracklist is after the break. Physical/digital copies available at those links. This remix album cannot come close to Daft Punk’s original creation, but for hardcore Tron and electronic dance club music fans this is something not to be glossed over.
In related Tron news, Tron: Legacy is now available on Blu-ray, DVD, and a bajillion other formats. Get home release details here.
You know Nick Pitera; he’s the YouTube star famously known for singing both the male and female parts from Aladdin‘s “A Whole New World.” (That video, by the way, currently has a whopping 22.8 million views.) His latest video he calls a “One Man Disney Movie” and it includes him once again seamlessly switching between the male and female vocals. Its a medley of Disney songs ranging from classics like Beauty and the Beast and more recent tales like Enchanted. What’s cool is that Pitera has split the screen into six squares each representing a different role (Heroine, Sidekick, Chorus, etc.) and we get to watch them all at the same time. Sit back and enjoy the nearly nine minute journey through Disney music as told by the man with a magnificently odd voice.
Hey Ryan Murphy, dontcha think it’s time to cast this kid on Glee?
The visually splendid, perfectly scored flick Tron: Legacy is yours to own on Blu-ray Tuesday, April 5, as is “TRON: The Original Classic Special Edition.” Disney’s been holding out on releasing the original Tron so that they could give it proper state-of-the-art digital restoration and enhanced high-definition sound it rightfully deserves. In addition to Blu-ray, Legacy will be released across various platforms including Blu-ray 3D, DVD, Digital Copy, Movie Download, and On-Demand. The BD release will boast 1080p visuals and 7.1 surround sound and pack in-depth bonus features on the making of the film. Disney is going to ship three Legacy bundles ranging from $40 to $80 in price. The motherload is a “5-disc 2-movie Blu-ray combo pack” that includes flick on Blu-ray, Blu-ray 3D, DVD, Digital Copy, and the original, remastered Tron. Bonus features include the “Derezzed” Daft Punk music video and featurettes called “The Next Day: Flynn Lives Revealed,” “Launching the Legacy,” and “Disc Roars.” In addition, all Blu-ray packs will include Disney Second Screen support. The Second Screen companion application can be accessed on any Internet-connected device (iPad, laptop, etc.) and it allows you to explore the story behind the film while you’re watching it. For example, you can engage with elements including 360-degree vehicle turnarounds and interactive progression reels. Look after the break to see the full breakdown of every release bundle.
Oh, and there’s one more thing. Along with Legacy and the original Tron, Disney is also releasing TRON: Legacy RECONFIGURED, an album featuring 14 remixes of the original motion picture soundtrack scored by Daft Punk. Let’s just say April 5 is going to be a wonderful day.
If you’ve purchased a 3DTV then you already know that exciting 3D content is annoyingly absent from the retail space. You can’t even pick up the best 3D feature film Avatar unless you buy it with a Panasonic set. But I’ve got some good news for you, so listen here. Walt Disney Studios has made plans to release “at least” 15 Disney films in 3D this year. The selection includes older classics such as The Lion King and Beauty and the Beast as well as modern hits such as Tangled and Tron: Legacy. Disney promises that the latter two films will release in 3D day-and-date and packaged with the Blu-ray 2D version. Be sure to look after the break for the full PR which lists other Disney hits getting the Blu-ray 3D treatment in 2011.
Johnny Depp is back as Capt. Jack Sparrow in another Pirates tale from Disney, Jerry Bruckheimer, and director Rob Marshall. Gore Verbinski, the original director from the first three films in the franchise, decided to sit this one out. Actors Orlando Bloom and Keira Knightley also parted ways with the film. This time around Jack Sparrow is hellbent on finding the Fountain of Youth. Depp is joined by new female lead Penélope Cruz who plays the daughter of the film’s main antagonist Blackbeard (Ian McShane). Geoffrey Rush reprises his role as Captain Hector Barbossa. As you’re watching the first theatrical trailer you’ll surely notice that the Klaus Badelt/Hans Zimmer collaborative score has carried over and is still fantastic. On Stranger Tides hits theatres May 20, 2011 in standard, 3D and IMAX 3D formats.
Update: I’ve replaced the Yahoo! Movies clip with the trailer that’s been uploaded to Disney’s YouTube channel. This one features a short introduction by Jack Sparrow and more importantly it can be viewed in full HD!
Counting down the days until Tron: Legacy hits theatres on December 17? That’s less than a month away people! Well I’ve got a treat for you. Embedded above is a video that will take you on the set of the upcoming sci-fi flick. In the 15 minute behind the scenes look you can expect to witness the following:
- Behind the scenes footage from the End of Line club
- Daft Punk in costume walking onto set
- Michael Sheen getting ready to film his scenes in the End of Line club
- Joseph Kosinski directing the actors
- Jeff Bridges wearing the special helmet to record his scenes as Clu
- Tons of footage of the practical sets and the actors getting ready to film
- Garrett Hedlund and Olivia Wilde performing a scene and getting ready for some stunts
- Jeff Bridges house in the Tron universe and what it was like behind the scenes
- Cast goofing around behind the scenes
- Filming on location in Vancouver
- Behind the scenes footage from Flynn’s Arcade
Guess I should have mentioned this earlier, but beware of spoilers. So go ahead, mash play, and let the soothing sounds of Daft Punk provide a rocking backdrop to some fantastic BTS action.
Pogo, an Australian electronic music producer, was commissioned by Disney to remix a bunch of their classic movies. He is best known for his work recording small sounds from a single film or scene and sequencing them to form a new piece of music. His latest creation “Wishery” combines vocal syllables, musical chords, and sound effects recorded from the 1937 animated film Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. The video quickly became a viral sensation and started exposing people the rest of Pogo’s fantastic work. For about a year Pogo was contractually obligated to keep his remixed video offline, but now that the Disney gag order has been lifted, you will find over a dozen of them at his YouTube channel. Some of my favorites include sounds from Up, Toy Story, Harry Potter, and Alice; these are embedded after the break. Pogo’s got a Pirates Of The Caribbean remix waiting in the wings; he calls it his best mix yet.
That’s right, people. Winnie the Pooh and company are making their way back to the silver screen for the first time in over 35 years. Disney brought back original animator Burny Mattinson (who will serve as senior story artist) to capture the classic essence that made everything so perfect about the original incarnation of Pooh and all the inhabitants of the Hundred Acre Wood. The film is co-directed by Stephen Anderson (Meet the Robinsons) and Don Hall (The Princess and the Frog). Craig Ferguson, Tom Kenny, and Bud Luckey lend their voices to the 2D animated film. Zooey Deschanel is set to sing the new version of the “Winnie the Pooh” theme song. You want a synopsis? You got it:
Walt Disney Animation Studios returns to the Hundred Acre Wood with “Winnie the Pooh,” the first big-screen Pooh adventure from Disney animation in more than 35 years. With the charm, wit and whimsy of the original featurettes, this all-new movie reunites audiences with the philosophical “bear of very little brain” and friends Tigger, Rabbit, Piglet, Kanga, Roo—and last, but certainly not least, Eeyore, who has lost his tail.
Inspired by five stories from A.A. Milne’s books in Disney’s classic, hand-drawn art style, the film reunites audiences with the [honey]-loving, philosophical bear and friends Eeyore, Tigger, Rabbit, Piglet and Owl in a wild quest to save [their friend] Christopher Robin from an imaginary culprit. It turns out to be a very busy day for a bear who simply set out to find some hunny.
If the first trailer sitting above does not make you immediately tingle all over and feel so warm and fuzzy inside, there’s something clearly wrong with you. Because Disney made the right decision of holding onto the original 2D animation (instead of opting for today’s 3D in-your-face pseudo-standard), this movie will undoubtedly hit all the right notes and shoot a wave of nostalgia goodness across our minds. I highly anticipate the return of Pooh-bear; do you?
Winnie the Pooh hits theatres July 15, 2011. Check out some beautifully crafted stills in the gallery below.