Minimalist approach in new Disney Pixar animation film


The animation feature, Up, from Walt Disney Pictures and Pixar Animation Studios will be released in South Africa on 11 September.

Up is the tenth film from Disney•Pixar and follows an unprecedented string of back-to-back successes from this stable including Wall•E, Ratatouille, Cars, The Incredibles, Finding Nemo, Monsters Inc, Toy Story and Toy Story 2, and A Bug’s Life.

Many of the acclaimed crew who worked on these box office hits have once again had a hand in crafting the film which John Lasseter, executive producer and chief creative officer for Walt Disney and Pixar Animation Studios, has described as “the funniest and most beautiful film we’ve ever made.”

Up is executive produced by Andrew Stanton (Finding Nemo, Wall•E), produced by Jonas Rivera and co-directed by Bob Peterson, with the screenplay by Peterson and Docter.

Pixar filmmakers have experimented with a number of different styles in past films, but opted for a completely minimalist approach in Up to set it apart from other Pixar features.

“In this film, we have a story about a man who floats his house to South America with balloons. We knew we needed a certain amount of whimsy and caricature, which is sort of my general aesthetic anyway. We were trying to reach back and connect to the great Disney films that we grew up with, like Peter Pan and Cinderella, and the great sense of style and caricature that they had,” explains Docter.

This posed several challenges for the animation team, which had to learn how to bring nuance, emotion and a full range of movement to the small, almost square figure of Carl and egg-shaped, overly-dressed Russell character.

Another tough assignment was creating the balloon canopy that carries off Carl’s house. Filmmakers wanted realistic balloon simulations and – with about 30 million balloons needed to lift this size house in reality – the team grappled with how to simulate the movements of the 10 000 – 20 000 balloons eventually featured in the film.

Up is the first Disney•Pixar feature to be released in Disney Digital 3D™, ushering in a new era of possibilities for the animation studio that brought moviegoers the first computer animated feature 14 years ago.

The voice cast includes legendary actor and multiple Emmy Award® winner, Ed Asner as Carl Fredricksen; 9-year-old Jordan Nagai (acting debut) as Russell; acclaimed Emmy Award®-winning actor Christopher Plummer as Charles Muntz; and John Ratzenberger – the only actor to voice characters in each of Pixar’s feature films – as a construction foreman named Tom.

Award-winning composer Michael Giacchino (Ratatouille, The Incredibles) lends his musical talents to creating the evocative score that accentuates the film’s emotions, humour and spirit of adventure.


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