Getting the opportunity to take a peek behind the curtain for a look at how a film is brought to life is enlightening. In the switch from VHS tapes to DVDs, studios began releasing more behind-the-scenes material for packaged films and television shows, providing audiences with additional inside access to productions. For art lovers, this has become an integral part of collecting. DVD and Blu-ray releases of Pixar films have usually included a great assortment of extra features taking us inside the studio and into the minds of the filmmakers. Now, on the web, you can get the closest look at the production of a Pixar film that we have ever seen.
It’s the most controversial time of the year. Awards season is officially underway, with various organizations beginning to announce nominations and even winners for what they consider to be the year’s best films. Where awards shows go, controversy follows closely behind, as bold choices are often made for which films, filmmakers, and actors are celebrated. On Monday, the Los Angeles branch of Association Internationale du Film d’Animation, also known as ASIFA-Hollywood, released their list of nominees for the Annie Awards, an event that many consider to be the biggest night for film and television animation. Pixar’s Monsters University and Toy Story OF TERROR! landed a combined 17 nominations. Find more details about what is in store for Pixar this awards season after the break!
After Pixar announced that The Good Dinosaur would be delayed, there was a question as to where the studio would move those employees who would have been working on the film. The animation process for a Pixar feature film takes approximately one year, so with the film not arriving in theaters until November 2015, there is almost an entire year before the bulk of the animation portion of production begins. We have our answer now, as the animation studio has stated that an undisclosed number of employees are being laid off.
The history of Pixar is a tale that has been told often because of its incredible story. The studio was on the brink of failure for a number of years before the release of Toy Story catapulted the company into a serious player in Hollywood. Now, as a result of an incredible number of hits in its short history, there is no other studio that is held to higher standards than Pixar. There have been a few excellent books written on Pixar (e.g. The Pixar Touch), but they have always been authored by outside sources. Random House has announced that studio co-founder Ed Catmull has penned a book about the studio and it will be arriving in bookstores next year!
There are a bevy of films in the Pixar catalog that are considered “instant classics,” from Up, to WALL-E, to all of the Toy Story films. Repeat viewings are a must to soak in the gorgeous visuals and the multi-layered story lines. Adding the films to a home theater library is guaranteed to bring the overall quality of said library up. Have you resisted upgrading your DVD library of Pixar films to Blu-ray? Or are you a collector of beautiful box sets? Next week, Disney/Pixar is releasing an insanely cool box set that may be perfect for you.
As the calendar turns to November, the awards race begins to heat up in Hollywood. Although the most notable of the awards shows, the Academy Awards, does not take place until March 2014, every studio aims to stay in front of the pack, especially as the holiday season is often stacked with films looking to capture the attention of critics and awards voters. Monsters University will be competing with Disney Animation’s Frozen to receive nominations in the Animated Film category, both of which the Academy stated have been submitted by Disney for contention. However, the Academy has also announced that Pixar’s 2013 short, The Blue Umbrella, did not make the shortlist of animation shorts advancing to the next stage and will not be competing for an Oscar.
Disney Infinity has proven to be incredibly popular, with sets and figures often selling out at retailers. Recently, it was announced that the gaming platform had sold through over 1 million units, effectively branding the venture a great success for Disney Interactive and developer Avalanche Software. With the holidays rapidly approaching, and the hunt for gifts beginning, sales are just ramping up, especially as Disney has continued to pledge updates and new content. Each week, new Toy Boxes are uploaded for gamers to download (for free!) and explore, providing significantly more replay value than we have come to expect from games in this age. Today, several Toy Story-themed Toy Boxes have been unleashed, and you can take a look at them after the break!
On Saturday, many woke up to the news that a new poster for The Good Dinosaur had been released. However, things just did not add up. As I pointed out when we posted the image, it would be questionable for Disney/Pixar to release a poster for a film two years down the line when the film next in line (Inside Out) still had not had a poster released. Studios tend to work in an orderly fashion, and promoting film number two before number one would be bizarre. Additionally, the website listed on the poster is not live, making it obvious that the poster was not meant to be released – not yet at least. Today, we have confirmation that the poster was not released by Pixar.
Last month, Pixar delayed the release of The Good Dinosaur by approximately 18 months, leaving 2014 without any feature film from the studio. The announcement of the significant delay came eight months before the film was due in theaters, which must have left other units within Disney and Pixar, like their consumer products divisions, scrambling. New plans had to be developed in how the film would be marketed, and when new products and tie-ins would appear. A new teaser poster for the film is now making the rounds online, and it gives us a great look at the main characters of the film. Take a look after the break!
Pixar Creates ‘Toy Story Nutcracker’ Short For Holiday ‘World of Color’ Show At Disney California Adventure
Pixar collaborates closely with the Disney Parks teams often, whether a new Pixar ride is being built or a new show utilizing the studio’s characters is being developed. Obviously, for a task as enormous as building Cars Land at Disney California Adventure (DCA), many Pixar employees contributed to bring Radiator Springs to life. Disney Parks has recently been working on a new holiday-themed edition of its World of Color show, a nightly show at DCA that projects images on massive water effects. A Toy Story segment is being developed, for which Pixar created new animation. Learn more and go behind-the-scenes at Pixar in a new video after the break!
‘Toy Story of Terror’ Easter Eggs – Pizza Planet Truck, The Good Dinosaur, The Blue Umbrella, WALL-E, More
We have grown accustomed to expecting a wealth of easter eggs in Pixar films, references to other films in its catalog. The Pizza Planet truck and A113 symbol are the most abundant, with both appearing in almost every Pixar feature film. The most challenging easter eggs tend to be those that reference upcoming films, as it is difficult to know what to look for. It is a tradition to hunt for easter eggs and one that has continued with the studio’s first television special, Toy Story of Terror. Take a look at images of the easter eggs we found after the break!
Toy Story is easily one of the most popular franchises at Disney, so it is only fitting that the series would receive its very own play set for Disney Infinity. Plans to release a play set for the huge property were announced at the D23 Expo in August. Now, we have more details and many more images featuring Woody, Buzz, Jessie, and the rest of the gang. After the break, take a look at a collection of new images from the play set, watch a video delving into the set, and find out when you can pick one up!
There was only a matter of time before speculation of a third Cars film started. While the first two Cars films are easily the most divisive films in the Pixar catalog, they have their dedicated fans. The franchise is also a beast when it comes to merchandise, with Cars toys and other tie-ins bringing in billions. After the release of Cars 2, new shorts have steadily been released, but there has been no news on a continuation of the films’ story of Lightning McQueen, Mater, and the town of Radiator Springs. Now, an actor who also served as a consultant for the films has stated that a new Cars film is in development. Read on for more details after the break.
Pixar has conquered the big screen and is now ready to tackle television with its first TV special, Toy Story OF TERROR!. With the entire cast from the film franchise returning, along with the large production team at Pixar working for over two years to produce the special, there is no doubt that this is the next major release from the animation studio. Although its 21-minute running time is considerably shorter than the 90+ minutes we are used to seeing from Pixar’s feature releases, it still allows the studio to pack in enough thrills and heart. Learn more about the special and go behind the scenes in a new video that has just been released. Watch it after the break!
Mickey Mouse is one of the most recognizable characters in the world, having captivated generations for decades. Although his popularity has never faded, the Disney mascot has recently experienced a bit of a resurgence due to great new shorts starring the character. The artistic style of the shorts has been gorgeous, mixing classic character designs and humor with a modern setting. In the most recent short, while admiring the beautiful backgrounds, a familiar Pixar easter egg could be seen. Take a look at it after the break!
Pixar has been growing over the years, with one of its biggest increases represented by the opening of a branch in Vancouver, Canada in 2010. Pixar Canada was created to work on shorts and television specials utilizing established franchises such as Toy Story and Cars. The studio worked on the animation and technical aspects of several shorts such as PartySaurus Rex and Small Fry. Shockingly, though, news has emerged that the branch was officially closed down today. Read on for more details after the break.
Historically, Blu-ray and DVD releases of films were the venue of choice for behind-the-scenes extras, while digital downloads tended to include solely the film and perhaps a short featurette delving into one aspect of the filmmaking process. That has changed recently, though, as downloadable copies of films have included many more extras and sometimes contain exclusive features that are not available elsewhere. Monsters University has just been released for digital download on iTunes, and it packs in a wealth of extras including deleted scenes. Find more details after the break!
The marketing campaign for Toy Story OF TERROR!, Pixar’s first-ever television special, is ramping up which means a bevy of new images and footage are making the rounds online. Recently, several new images were unveiled, all of which had a darker tone than we are used to seeing from the Toy Story franchise. The animation studio has essentially created a send-up of the horror genre, but has promised the trademark humor and heart we have come to expect from Pixar projects. A brand new clip was released last week, and it again provides that mix of creepy and funny. Watch the 65-second clip in full after the break!
We are now less than three weeks away from Toy Story OF TERROR!, Pixar’s first television special. Although the project is not quite as large as a feature film, the 30-minute special is still a significantly larger production than the shorts the studio releases every year. More importantly, this will provide us with the largest opportunity to spend time with the lovable cast of toys since the release of the finale of the feature film trilogy, Toy Story 3. On the heels of our exclusive debut of a new image from the special featuring Combat Carl, Disney has released five more images. Take a look at the great stills after the break!