ENJOY THE SHOW
There might not be a Pixar film in theaters this year, but that doesn't mean the animation studio doesn't have something in store for fans. This Christmas, a new TV special is coming around Christmastime called Toy Story That Time Forgot. There will be a sneak preview of the ABC TV special at Comic-Con on Thursday, July 24th, and that's where you can get ahold of a cool poster designed by Hellboy creator Mike Mignola. That might seem like a weird match-up, but when you see the poster with a dinosaur warrior that has a mace in his hand, it'll all make sense. The Halloween short was fun, and this seems cool too. Look!
Toho has unveiled the full-length feature trailer for the latest Studio Ghibli film, titled When Marnie Was There, hitting theaters in Japan later this month (it won't arrive in the US until next year). We recently featured the first teaser trailer for Marnie, which was short and made up mostly of the theme song from the film. In this full trailer we get a better sense of the story, about a young girl who befriends a ghost named Marnie, even though she doesn't release it's a ghost. There are a few playful scenes and fun moments, but as always it just looks absolutely beautiful. I'm curious to check this out, something a bit different from Ghibli, yet still made with the same passion and detail that goes into every single frame of their movies. Have fun!
As much as I love Studio Ghibli, I'm not the biggest fan of these kind of casting updates. I prefer the original Japanese voice cast with subtitles, but as always it's hard to sell the film here in the US without dubbed English voices. GKids has unveiled the cast for the English language version of Ghibli's The Tale of the Princess Kaguya, directed by Isao Takahata, his first film in fourteen years. Providing the lead voice will be Chloë Grace Moretz, who is already everywhere and in every movie from Cannes to The Equalizer. The Tale of the Princess Kaguya adapts a classic story about a tiny girl found inside a shining stalk of bamboo.
Following our first look at the new line-up of animated heroes in Disney and Marvel's Big Hero 6, the first full trailer has arrived. However, we don't get much of a look at characters we haven't seen yet. Most of the trailer focuses on Hiro Hamada getting interrogated by police after he encounters some bad guy with "microbots" while Baymax tries to fix himself with tape. And then we get to see Hiro upgrading his puffy robot so he can fly, which is pretty cool. We do get a brief encounter with some of the new heroes as they are chased by the villain, but they're not wearing their superhero suits yet. This still looks great though. Watch!
In an effort to make their D23 Expo the place to find out about all of Disney's latest projects, the studio doesn't have a presence at Comic-Con this summer with the exception of letting Marvel Studios do their thing as usual. But since Disney won't be around, that means we're likely not going to see anything from their animated comic book adaptation Big Hero 6. But thankfully, the studio has just announced their voice cast. As we already heard T.J. Miller, Jamie Chung and Maya Rudolph are on board, and they'll be joined by Scott Adsit, Damon Wayans Jr., Genesis Rodriguez, James Cromwell, Alan Tudyk, Daniel Tenney and Ryan Potter. And we also have a first look at our superheroes as well! Look below!
It's a bummer that we're not getting a theatrical release from Pixar Animation this year, but hopefully they'll make up for it next year with Inside Out, the heady story of the conflicting emotions inside a young girl's mind. And along with that film, as has become customary, we'll be getting an original short film from Pixar as well. It's called Lava, and the film is a 7-minute love story between two mountains named Uku and Lele (like ukulele, get it?). The film will actually premiere at the Hiroshima International Animation Festival in Japan next week, and before the film's release, a first look photo shows off one of the happy volcanoes.
More than meets the eye! Autobots wage their battle to destroy the evil forces of the Decepticons! The Transformers! Robots in disguise! In theaters now is Michael Bay's Transformers: Age of Extinction, and while it features the Dinobots and Mark Wahlberg, it also kind of sucks. Instead of wasting your money, we present this amateur fan-made short film for your viewing pleasure, featuring various action figures/toys used in a five minute stop-motion short called - Battle Tanker VS Giant. It's essentially an action-filled Transformers video in the style of the original, old school Transformers cartoons from the 80's, but made by one guy on his own from 2013 to 2014. It's quite impressive. Something fun to watch this long weekend.
New Ghibli, new Ghibli! Even though many of us have yet to see Studio Ghibli's other new film The Tale of Princess Kaguya, their very next project is due out in theaters in Japan this summer, and it's titled When Marnie Was There. Adapted from Joan G. Robinson's book, this new animated version of the Omoide no Marnie story is directed by Hiromasa Yonebayashi (of The Secret World of Arrietty). The story is about a young girl who befriends another girl named Marnie who might just be a ghost. This is another one of those teasers based around the theme song, and it's lovely. I'm curious to see this whenever it makes its way over.
DreamWorks Animation finally released How to Train Your Dragon 2 in theaters last month, and the film is definitely on par with the original fantasy adventure. Now a new featurette dives into the sound design and editing of the animated film, which is always fascinating since all of the sounds in the film have to be manufactured behind the scenes. SoundWorks Collection always has the coolest, in-depth look at this element of production, complete with insight from talents who bring the sounds to life, like Skywalker Sound re-recording mixer and sound designer Randy Thom and director Dean DeBlois. Watch below!
Yay! The next short film attached to the start of the next Pixar movie has been announced. Showing in front of Pixar's Inside Out directed by Pete Docter, due in theaters June 19th, 2015, is a short titled Lava. The official synopsis from Pixar announcing the short in promotion of Inside Out, with a poster seen below, states: "Inspired by the isolated beauty of tropical islands and the explosive allure of ocean volcanoes, Lava is a musical love story that takes place over millions of years." Charming. There are some whales, birds, turtles, and dolphins on the poster, but this sounds like another wonderful creation from Pixar. Can't wait.
Earlier this year, we got word that comedians Louis C.K. and Kevin Hart would be lending their voices to an Untitled Pets Movie, an animated comedy from Illumination Entertainment, the same company behind Despicable Me. Now the voice cast has expanded with even more great comedic talent. The Wrap reports stand-up comedian Hannibal Buress, "Saturday Night Live" cast member Bobby Moynihan, In a World... lead Lake Bell and "The Office" regular Ellie Kemper will also voice characters in the film that Universal has slated to open on February 12th, 2016. But the real treat is Albert Brooks is in talks as well.
After singing her heart out in Pitch Perfect, and returning to a capella with the sequel directed by Elizabeth Banks that is underway right now, Anna Kendrick is getting musical again. However, this time she won't be stepping in front of a camera, because DreamWorks Animation has revealed that the star of Up in the Air, Drinking Buddies and and Scott Pilgrim vs. the World will lend her voice to Trolls, the film based on the hairy dolls of the same name. Kendrick will play Poppy, the relentlessly upbeat princess who is at the center of the film described as an animated musical comedy, already set for release November 4th, 2016.
That headline works both as a descriptor of the plot and the quality of the film that will come from Disney's animated spin-off sequel Planes: Fire & Rescue. Despite the high quality of animation here, we're still not sold that this film is anything but an hour and a half commercial for toys. Even Transformers: Age of Extinction is at least going for some kind of wow factor when it comes to the action, while this family friendly sequel just feels like it's on auto-pilot (no pun intended). Plus Dane Cook's voice work as the lead plane Dusty seems half-hearted, as if he knows that he's part of Disney's junior varsity team. Watch below!
Now that you've seen it, what did you think? Finally, our friends Toothless and Hiccup are back! After a quick four years, DreamWorks Animation returns with How to Train Your Dragon 2, the sequel to the surprise modern classic hit from DWA, How to Train Your Dragon. Jay Baruchel provides the voice for Hiccup, a young Viking who befriends a dragon named Toothless. In this sequel, the Vikings are friends but encounter more foes of dragons as well as some mysterious new friends along the way. Is it better than the first wonderful movie? Could it be that good? Or does it have sequel problems, without as much care as the first one? Once you've seen it, leave a comment with your thoughts on DWA's How to Train Your Dragon 2.