I’m back home after the BIGGEST bi-annual event of the year. D23EXPO! We have lots of news to get out to you so keep checking in over the next few days. Warning: This RECAP may be EPIC. During the presentation that John Lasseter, chief creative officer of Walt Disney and Pixar Animation Studio himself led, it was excitement personified. Imagine if you could a room that held 7,500 people packed to the gills. Multiple presentation screens, sneak peeks, new details, musical performances and appearances from stars like including Benjamin Bratt, Anthony Gonzalez, Josh Gad, Kristen Bell, Holly Hunter, Craig T. Nelson, Sarah Vowell, Samuel L. Jackson, Huck Milner and Sarah Silverman among others. The excitement and electricity in the room was palpable, but lets get down to business. UPCOMING MOVIES!
COCO November 22, 2017
Guests were treated to the first-ever public performance of “Remember Me” from Pixar Animation Studios’ upcoming feature film “Coco.” Anthony Gonzalez, who provides the voice of Miguel in the film, and Benjamin Bratt, who lends his voice to Ernesto de la Cruz, teamed up to perform the song written by Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez. Capping the animation presentation, the grand finale featured more than 160 performers who descended upon Hall D23 at the Anaheim Convention Center, including the Grammy-winning Mariachi Divas de Cindy Shea and Ballet Folklorico de Los Angeles under the direction of Kareli Montoya, and the Grammy®-winning Gordon Goodwin Big Phat Band.
“Our film embraces a broad landscape of music,” said director Lee Unkrich. “We were fortunate to have Kristen and Bobby create ‘Remember Me’—it’s the signature song made famous by Ernesto de la Cruz, and it embodies the key theme in our story: the importance of remembering loved ones both in life and beyond.”
Unkrich, co-director and screenwriter Adrian Molina and producer Darla K. Anderson shared details about the original story with the crowd. In theaters, Nov. 22, 2017, “Coco” introduces Miguel, an aspiring musician whose family long ago banned music. Desperate to prove his talent and follow in the footsteps of his idol, Ernesto de la Cruz, Miguel makes a fateful decision and finds himself in the Land of the Dead, where he meets his extended family and charming trickster Hector (voice of Gael García Bernal). Together, they set off on an extraordinary journey to unlock the real story behind Miguel’s family history.
“Coco” features an original score from Oscar®-winning composer Michael Giacchino (“Up,” “Rogue One”) and additional songs co-written by Germaine Franco (“Dope,” “Shovel Buddies”) and Molina. Also part of the team is musical consultant Camilo Lara of the music project Mexican Institute of Sound.
I’ve always loved Benjamin Bratt, but who knew he could sing! The Musical number was excellent and I think this will be another win for PIXAR. If you love COCO in just a few weeks I’ll be able to report more from PIXAR headquarters! PLUS, Fans in attendance all received an exclusive “Coco” poster depicting the film’s iconic skull guitar.
OLAF’S FROZEN ADVENTURE Short November 22, 2017
Kristen Bell, the voice of Anna, introduced fans to the new “Frozen” holiday featurette, “Olaf’s Frozen Adventure.” Josh Gad, the voice of Olaf, surprised the crowd with a live performance of the all-new original song “That Time of Year,” written by Elyssa Samsel and Kate Anderson. The song is part of Walt Disney Animation Studios’ new 21-minute featurette, which hits the big-screen in front of Disney•Pixar’s “Coco” on Nov. 22, 2017.
Joining Bell and Gad in the featurette are Idina Menzel as the voice of Elsa, and Jonathan Groff as the voice of Kristoff.
The featurette is directed by the Emmy®-winning team Kevin Deters and Stevie Wermers-Skelton (“Prep & Landing”) and produced by Oscar® winner Roy Conli (“Big Hero 6”).
I love a short and I think we all have been not so patiently waiting to go back to Arrendale. The fact that this is mostly for Olaf wins bonus points for me.
Incredibles 2 June 15, 2018
Lasseter, who’s looked forward to the return of everyone’s favorite family of superheroes since “The Incredibles” was still in production, was excited to share with fans a look at what the fashion world thinks of super-suit stylist Edna Mode—the petite-but-powerful character introduced in Pixar Animation Studio’s 2004 Oscar®-winning feature. Showcasing fashion phenoms from Heidi Klum and Kendall Jenner to Zac Posen and Rachel Zoe, the video can be viewed here:
You guys know how much I love Edna Mode. She was who I dressed up as for my #D23OrBust photo PLUS they had a cute installation on the floor about her collection.
“Incredibles 2” director Brad Bird—who lends his voice to Edna—joined Lasseter on stage to welcome to the festivities the voices of Mr. and Mrs. Incredible (Craig T. Nelson and Holly Hunter), Violet (Sarah Vowell), Dash (newcomer Huck Milner) and Frozone (Samuel L. Jackson). Bird revealed details of the upcoming caper, which puts the family into an expanded universe that includes new allies and a brand-new villain. “‘Incredibles 2’ is really a family film, it’s just that the family happens to have super powers,” said Bird. “They may have super speed or super strength, but they experience the same problems as any family.”
“Bob’s actually home with the kids this time and I’m the one out fighting crime,” added Hunter. She joked, “I’ve been working out 13 hours a day!”
Incredibles 2 is going to be great! It’s like the nostalgia of PIXAR is making a comeback! Plus FROZONE!!!
Ralph Breaks The Internet: Wreck It Ralph 2 November 21, 201
Directors Rich Moore and Phil Johnston hit the stage at D23 Expo 2017, introducing Emmy®-winning actress and comedian Sarah Silverman, who returns as the voice of Vanellope von Schweetz.
Fans were the first to see the global debut of a scene from the film that pays hilarious homage to the Disney Princesses. Lasseter revealed that filmmakers had asked the original voice actresses behind the Princesses featured to reprise their roles for the sequence, and in a moment no Disney fan will forget, Auli‘i Cravalho (“Moana”), Kristen Bell (Anna in “Frozen”), Kelly MacDonald (Merida in “Brave”), Mandy Moore (Rapunzel in “Tangled”), Anika Noni Rose (Tiana in “The Princess and the Frog”), Irene Bedard (“Pocahontas”), Linda Larkin (Jasmine in “Aladdin”), Paige O’Hara (Belle in “Beauty and the Beast”) and Jodi Benson (Ariel in “The Little Mermaid”) were welcomed on stage for the largest gathering of Disney Princesses in history.
PRINCESS ALERT!!! Oh My Gosh, you guys! I wish you could have been in the room during this scene and the ensuing princesses coming out after. It was truly magical! First, the scene which you will see is Disney at it’s finest. Disney making fun of themselves, but with that fun humor only Wreck It Ralph can. Then the build up as each princess came out. The fans screamed louder and louder as each one came out. Some fans were literally in tears. THIS moment right here is where my love for Disney grew even more. Now let’s talk about Wreck It Ralph 2:
Walt Disney Animation Studios’ follow-up to 2012’s “Wreck-It Ralph” leaves the arcade behind, venturing into the expansive universe of the internet—which may or may not survive Ralph’s not-so-light touch. Outcasts-turned-BFFs Ralph (voice of John C. Reilly) and Vanellope von Schweetz are reuniting with Fix-It Felix (voice of Jack McBrayer) and Sergeant Calhoun (voice of Jane Lynch). Filmmakers revealed a new character, Yesss, an algorithm who plays an important role in Ralph and Vanellope’s journey within the internet. Golden Globe®-winning actress Taraji P. Henson (“Empire”) lends her voice to the character. “Yesss is a new character who owns the website Buzzaholic,” said Henson. “Yesss knows about everything cool and on trend. And she does spell her name with a triple ‘s.’ Yesss is very savvy, smart and sexy.”
Untitled Disneytoon Studios Film April 12, 2019
John Lasseter kicked off the presentation by announcing Disneytoon Studios’ original new animated movie, “Untitled DTS Film.” Directed by Klay Hall and Bobs Gannaway, and produced by Ferrell Barron, the theatrical feature film explores the future of aviation—taking moviegoers to the edge of discovery in the air—and beyond.
While I don’t have any video or pictures for this untitled film, I can tell you I felt like it was from the “Cars Universe” The Jets had eyes just like Cars and PLanes, but the animation was intense. The Jets were going super fast and into Space. I’ll let you know as soon as more information is released.
Toy Story 4 June 21, 2019
Lasseter invited Pixar’s Josh Cooley (“Riley’s First Date?” short) to the stage, revealing that Cooley has assumed full director responsibilities for “Toy Story 4.” The pair brought with them a behind-the-scenes look at a day in the director’s life at the Northern California studio.
Toy Story 4 had one of the largest audience participation. People cheered. People sang. It’s one of my favorite PIXAR films and I can’t wait for its release.
FROZEN 2 November 27, 2019
Directed by Chris Buck and Jennifer Lee, and produced by Peter Del Vecho, Walt Disney Animation Studios’ feature-length follow-up to 2013’s Oscar®-winning film “Frozen” is slated for theaters on November 27, 2019. Bell, Gad, Menzel and Groff are reprising their roles in an all-new story. Lasseter, Bell and Gad shared with “Frozen” fans a behind-the-scenes video showcasing the filmmakers’ recent research trip to Norway, Finland and Iceland.
The scenery from the Behind The Scenes look was breathtaking so I’m sure it will be reflected in the next Frozen. I can’t wait till the first trailer is released!
UNTITLED DAN SCANLON MOVIE
Director Dan Scanlon, who helmed Pixar’s “Monsters University,” joined Lasseter to share a few details about an all-new original feature film currently in production at Pixar Animation Studios. According to Scanlon, who lost his father at a very young age, the film is inspired by the question he’s always asked: who was my father? The story is set in a world with no humans—only elves, trolls and sprites—“anything that would be on the side of a van in the ’70s,” said the director. “In the film, we’re going to tell the story of two teenage elf brothers whose father died when they were too young to remember him. But thanks to the little magic still left in the world, the boys embark on a quest that will allow them a chance to spend one last magical day with their father.”
Not a lot was released about this movie.
As you can tell a LOT of information, first looks, coll musical numbers and more was released in just 2 hours. What are you most excited for?
***Disclosure: I attended the #D23EXPO My flight, lodgings, and expenses were covered by Disney All opinions are 100% mine. ***