Friday, November 7, 2014

'Toy Story 4' Set for 2017 Release, Lasseter Will Direct

I think it's safe to say that this is one announcement no one saw coming. There had been murmurings of a fourth Toy Story on several occasions before, but most fans had taken them with a grain of salt. Millions of jaws smacked the ground hard today when Disney and Pixar confirmed that Toy Story 4 is indeed happening.

Disney CEO Bob Iger broke the news during an earnings call, and confirmed that Pixar and Disney Animation honcho John Lasseter, who helmed the first two Toy Story films, will return to direct the fourth installment in the series.

Toy Story 4 will arrive in theaters on June 17th, 2017 and will reportedly be a love story. Lasseter said this of Pixar's approach towards sequels in an interview the the LA Times:

"A lot of people in the industry view us doing sequels as being for the business of it, but for us it's pure passion. We only make sequels when we have a story that's as good as or better than the original. We don't just, because of the success of a film, automatically say we're going to do a sequel and then figure out what we're going to do."

John Lasseter and the crew behind Toy Story 4

In true Pixar fashion, Lasseter and studio veterans Lee Unkrich (who directed Toy Story 3), Pete Docter, and Andrew Stanton came up with the story for the film over lunch one day in his office, he told the LA Times. He and Stanton spent the past two years crafting the story and later brought in Rashida Jones and Will McCormack to pen the script, having seen their 2012 comedy Celeste and Jesse Forever. Galyn Susman, producer of last year's television special Toy Story of Terror and the upcoming Toy Story That Time Forgot, will produce the fourth full-length Toy Story film.

I leave you with a song from this year's Muppets Most Wanted which, funnily enough, predicted today's big announcement.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

'The Good Dinosaur' Gets Its Director

When Pixar announced that Bob Peterson would no longer direct their upcoming film The Good Dinosaur over a year ago, they made no mention of who would be taking over the reins on the project. Soon after, the studio announced that the film would be pushed from its original release date of May 30th, 2014 all the way to November 25th, 2015, leaving this year Pixar-less. We had heard little else about Pixar's dino flick since, until last month, that is.

As many had suspected, former co-director Peter Sohn (story artist on several Pixar productions, director of Partly Cloudy, voice of Emile in Ratatouille and Squishy in Monsters University) has been named the new director of the film, as Pixar revealed via their Twitter account a couple of weeks ago. While many fans had assumed that Sohn had taken over directorial duties completely after Peterson's removal, this fun little video of the new director sketching the eponymous Good Dinosaur, Arlo, is the studio's first official statement regarding the film's new director.

The Good Dinosaur is just a little over a year away, and while that may seem far away, we have a whole other Pixar feature to look forward to coming in June! It appears as if 2015 will be the first ever year to see the release of two feature Pixar films. Once upon a time this was supposed to happen in 2011, but obviously circumstances did not allow for that. However, despite having experienced several bumps on the road during production, Dinosaur seems to be on the right track, and it's probably safe to say that next year we will at last have a year with twice as much Pixar goodness as we have come to expect.

The Good Dinosaur hits theaters November 25th, 2015.