In just under 30 years of existence, Pixar has amassed an incredible amount of goodwill from audiences around the world, giving the studio more respect than any other film studio in Hollywood. In recent years, the universal praise that the studio usually garnered has wavered, with Toy Story 3 (2010) being Pixar’s last mega-success. Even though both Brave and Monsters University were quality films, this year’s spectacular Inside Out will be the film that reminds viewers that Pixar has no equal in the film business. Read my spoiler-free review after the break! [Read more…]
Pixar’s second television special, Toy Story That Time Forgot, premiered on television yesterday. Like many other projects from the studio, fans who rewatch the 22-minute special will notice the attention to detail given to the dialogue as well as the environments. Chief among the cool surprises is the collection of easter eggs spread throughout. We have found quite a number of them (and we are sure there are more to be found). Take a look at the easter eggs in Toy Story That Time Forgot after the break! [Read more…]
UK Artist Clare Elsom brings fantastic humor and wit to her charming drawings. Her portfolio is packed with samples of her fantastic art that’s been featured on children’s books, merchandise and publications from around the world. And now she lends her distinct style to the world of Pixar in this fantastic tribute. Our thanks to Clare for this wonderful wall of characters. Make sure to visit her website and blog to see all the other great images from this very busy artist! [Read more…]
Pixar is focused on producing original films next year, with Inside Out and The Good Dinosaur both slated to arrive in theaters in 2015. That does not mean that the studio has forgotten about its fan favorite characters. Woody and Buzz, along with the rest of the Toy Story gang have made the jump to the small screen, with a holiday special airing on ABC later this year. The next feature film from Pixar that is a follow-up, though, is Finding Dory, a sequel to Finding Nemo. It is scheduled to arrive in 2016, and although we do not have many details about its story, we now know that it will feature a small reunion for two actors from The Wire. [Read more…]
The Internet and nostalgia go together like peanut butter and jelly, barbecue chicken and the Fourth of July, and other appropriate food-related metaphors. A day doesn’t seem to go by anymore without Buzzfeed or another clickbait-centric website publishing an article about some piece of popular culture from the 1980s or 1990s, something you’d forgotten over time but are reminded of with a few well-placed GIFs. The power of this kind of nostalgia has revived countless toys into movies, or old properties into new ones designed to appeal as much to adults as to their kids; it’s both enveloping and somewhat corrosive. This isn’t to say that nostalgia in general is a bad thing; the problem is that the Internet has allowed such wistfulness to go unchecked and run rampant. [Read more…]
Stephy Coffey does some seriously appealing character design. Lovely ladies and dashing gents fill her portfolio pages. There’s lots to like about her great work. Her conceptual work and illustrations are sure to please. Check them out for yourself at her blog. She’s really outdone herself with this all-American tribute to Pixar just in time for the 4th of July. Take a closer look at her artwork and read more about Stephy in her own words after the break!
The concept of an infinite number of universes parallel to our own has some vague scientific backing behind it, but is mostly just fun to consider without presuming there’s any real logic involved. If you buy into the theory, then there’s a parallel universe where Dewey did defeat Truman in 1948, where the Buffalo Bills didn’t lose the Super Bowl in 1990 against the New York Giants due to a wide-right field goal, and so on. Thus, there might even be a parallel universe where every aspect of our current one is the same except for one thing: here, John Carter was a success at the box office, not an eternal punchline. It’s been over 2 years since John Carter was released in theaters after decades of development, and it left theaters almost as quickly. Although it was not the most painful flop in recent memory (any movie that grosses nearly $300 million worldwide deserves a tiny bit of credit), and although it has a dedicated subset of fans, John Carter is almost akin to a modern-day Ishtar: a movie known for its financial failure to a wide audience, even if that’s not equal to its creative quality.
California based artist Dennis Salvatier produces some extremely charming and appealing art. His portfolio is filled with distinct takes on characters from pop culture. Combining a strong eye for design with some really appealing character designs, it’s easy to see why his work is so popular. Browse his portfolio to see the diverse set of skills he brings to his illustration, logos and design work. We thought he’d bring a great perspective to the world of Pixar and he certainly didn’t disappoint. We’re thrilled with his adorable tribute to some of Pixar’s biggest films. Our thanks to Dennis for contributing this fantastic piece. Read on for more about Dennis in his own words.
What separates Pixar Animation Studios from the rest of mainstream animation companies, as this column has mentioned plenty of times before, is its willingness to take a risk. In many ways, they’ve been operating under a system of risk from the very beginning, before they were even an established name in the TV-commercial business. The first major risk they overcame was the very acceptance by the public of computer animation being utilized for a feature film; in the intervening time, the biggest risks they overcame were story-based, as they pinned their hopes on movies about robots who don’t speak a discernible human language, a rat who wants to cook, and more. But in recent years, the risks they’ve run up against are, in some respects, of their own doing. To wit: how risky is it for Pixar to invest more heavily in the future on sequels than on new original films? Does the studio stand to lose its respect among the public by reviving old characters instead of creating new ones?
Of the various behind-the-scenes stories that have now become apocryphal to the Pixar legend, it’s hard to beat the one associated with Finding Nemo. In the final few years of his time at the top of the Walt Disney Company, Michael Eisner was convinced that Pixar’s winning streak both at the box office and with critics was about to end with this animated feature, the first led by director Andrew Stanton. Eisner couldn’t possibly fathom, he told shareholders, how this movie about a clownfish desperately scouring the ocean for his missing (and only) son with a forgetful blue Tang at his side could ever hit it big with audiences worldwide. When he made these comments in 2001, he did so based on a work-in-progress screening that was, in three respects, vastly different from the final product: Marlin was voiced by William H. Macy, instead of Albert Brooks; the angelfish Gill was, in spite of being the leader of the fish in P. Sherman’s aquarium, lying about his sordid past; and Stanton chose to dole out a series of flashbacks explaining what happened to Nemo’s mother, Coral, instead of beginning the film this way.