Wednesday, January 30, 2008

'Up' release date changed? [UPDATE]

Several blogs are reporting today that Pixar's Up will be released on May 29, 2009 rather than on June 12, 2009, as previously believed.

I'm not sure whether I believe this story. It's based on the fact that a few websites, including ComingSoon.net, now list Up's release date as May 29. The quite reputable IMDb Pro continues to list Up's release date as June 12. So I really don't know what to think.

I will try and look further into the matter...

Update: I've just spoken with someone from Pixar's PR department who would neither confirm nor deny both the June 12 and May 29 dates. She did tell me that there will be an announcement this summer (!) regarding Up, in which the release dates will be announced. So I guess we'll have to wait...

(Update at 2:41 PM)

Update: May 29, 2009 date is now the official release date for the film, according to Disney and Pixar.

(Updated on April 9, 2008)

Monday, January 28, 2008

'Up' story original: Pixar

After nearly a month of trying, I've just spoken to someone at the Pixar press department who told me that Up's storyline will be "original" and not a version of any previous work.

She did not wish to comment specifically on the story about Up being a retelling of the classic tale Don Quixote, except to say that Pixar was "not responsible" for the story. And not surprisingly, she declined to give me any new details regarding Up.

Near the end of the call, I asked her about the next WALL-E trailer, when it will be out. She apologetically told me that she wasn't sure if she could share that information with me, and directed me to the Disney press department, which I have yet to contact. But "it will be out in the spring", she said. I asked her whether that would be with Disney's College Road Trip on March 7, as I have previously speculated. She paused a bit, but again she could not confirm that for me.

Sunday, January 27, 2008

New WALL-E pic in EW

/Film reports that a new picture of everybody's favourite robot has been published in the February 1, 2008 issue of Entertainment Weekly (EW). The issue contains a special "first look" section which features WALL-E.

New 'Up' art on display

Never-before-seen art from Pixar's upcoming feature Up has been spotted at Disney's Hollywood Studios (formerly known as Disney-MGM Studios) in Orlando, Florida.

(Image credit: EpcotServo)

Friday, January 25, 2008

WALL-E product tie-ins up in the air

Variety reports that while normal product tie-in deals are usually done six to twelve months in advance of a film's release, Disney and Pixar are still "working hard" looking for the right marketer for WALL-E product tie-ins.

Interesting story...

Brad Bird talks to Rotten Tomatoes

In a new interview with Rotten Tomatoes, Ratatouille director Brad Bird mentions that he "couldn't be happier" about Ratatouille's five Oscar nominations. Yet, he says, the Oscar noms "pale" in comparison to winning big at the Golden Tomato Awards, which 'Rat' did earlier this week.

Also talks about 1906, his upcoming project.

Read the full interview here.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

WALL-E "movie projector" available for pre-order

A new WALL-E-branded product has just shown up at Amazon.com.

It's a storybook for kids ages 9-12 that comes with an included "movie projector". The projector allows the reader to project images from the story onto a wall while they read.

Link

(In case you're wondering, I usually don't post on minor news items like this, but hey, why not!)

New cover for Art of WALL-E book

New cover art for the Art of WALL-E book has just been added to it's Amazon.com page.

This cover is different from what we had seen previously. I actually like it a whole lot more...

(via Upcoming Pixar)

Toy Story films to be released in 3-D

Back in November of last year, I wrote a post asking, Would Pixar go 3-D? As in, would Pixar start producing films for presentation in stereoscopic 3-D? The idea hadn't really been talked about all that much when I wrote the post.

Well, the big news today coming from Dick Cook, chairman of The Walt Disney Studios, is that Disney plans to release new Disney Digital 3-D versions of Pixar's Toy Story (October 2, 2009), Toy Story 2 (February 12, 2010), and the upcoming Toy Story 3 (A release date was finally set today: June 18, 2010).

This is really big news, folks. More to come...

Read the press release here.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Pixar launches new program for recent college graduates

Wow, it's been a big day for news about Pixar! Anyways, I've got one more story (or two, depending on how you look at it) to share with you.

The career pages of the official Pixar website have just been updated to include information about a new program that Pixar has launched especially for recent college graduates. The stated goal of the program is to provide new graduates with the opportunity to apply their academic training and knowledge in a real job at the Studios.

Also in Pixar career news: Three new job listings just got added to the career listings page of the site, including one for a new Second Assistant Editor. Check them out here.

Pixar releases RenderMan Courseware

Pixar has just released the first version of its RenderMan Certified Courseware, which was created in association with Escape Studios to teach prospective students skills in using Pixar's state-of-the-art RenderMan image renderer.

Sounds pretty cool, though I doubt I'd ever be smart enough to learn! Seriously. (Talk about journalistic honesty!)

For more information, read the press release here.

(via VFX World)

Brad Lewis talks Oscars (and picket lines)

Ratatouille producer Brad Lewis, who also serves as mayor of the City of San Carlos, California, spoke Monday about attending this year's Academy Awards, which will be his first ever chance to walk across the stage during an Oscar ceremony, and the risk that it might not happen due to the ongoing writers' strike.

“I’ve always said I’ll go when I’ve earned the right, and this year I feel like I’ve earned it, so I hope it goes on," he said. Still, “We all respect the picket lines because we’re a family of individual artists who work together to make films.”

(Source: Examiner.com)
-----
Correction: The Examiner.com article is incorrect when it says that this year's Academy Awards ceremony would be Lewis' first chance to "walk across the Oscar stage". Due to Academy rules, Lewis, as producer, would not be allowed on stage during an acceptance speech for any of the categories Ratatouille is nominated in. Producers may only go up on stage in the event of a Best Picture win.

Oscar nominations are "great honor", says Brad Bird

In a press release made available by Disney this afternoon, Ratatouille director (or more officially, co-director) Brad Bird commented on yesterday's big news that 'Rat' has received five Academy Award nominations.

He said: “It’s a great honor to be recognized by the Academy and I’m incredibly proud of all the artists and technical geniuses at Pixar who helped to make it such a wonderful experience.

Michael Giacchino is a brilliant composer and collaborator and I’m especially thrilled that the Academy has recognized his fantastic original score which enriches every part of the film.

Ratatouille was a very special challenge for me, and I am enormously pleased and grateful that it has struck a chord with audiences, critics and Academy members."


Well, I forgot to say this yesterday, but congratulations to Brad Bird and everybody at Pixar who worked on the film!!

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Apple loves Disney/Pixar

The above is Apple's e-mail ad campaign for the new iTunes Movie Rental service.

A perfect example of cross-promotion...

Oscar nominations handed out; Ratatouille picks up 5

The nominations for the 80th Annual Academy Awards have just been announced by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in Beverly Hills, California.

Ratatouille is nominated in the following categories:
  • Best Original Screenplay
  • Best Animated Feature Film of the Year
  • Achievement in Music (Original Score)
  • Achievement in Sound Editing
  • Achievement in Sound Mixing

The Awards will be handed out at the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood just over a month from today on Sunday, February 24, 2008.

Don't forget to check back here before, during, and after the awards ceremony for the most complete coverage of Pixar at the Oscars!

Monday, January 21, 2008

Just for laughs [UPDATE]

That other Brad won't be too happy about this.

Link

Update: Comical error since corrected.

Ratatouille wins Golden Tomato Award

Ratatouille has been awarded the Golden Tomato Award for Wide Release Film of the Year by Rotten Tomatoes.

Ratatouille also won in the Animation and User choice categories.

For more on the Golden Tomato Awards go here.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Ratatouille nominated for BAFTA Award

Pixar's Ratatouille has been nominated in the Animated Film category for this year's British Academy Film Awards (to be sponsored by mobile phone company Orange), the British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) announced earlier today.

The awards will be handed out on February 10 in London.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Ratatouille wins Golden Globe

Ratatouille has won the Golden Globe Award for Best Animated Feature Film at the 65th Annual Golden Globe Awards. Congrats to everyone who worked on the film.

For more on the Golden Globes, go here.

Friday, January 11, 2008

Tom Hanks talks Toy Story 3

Talking to British TV/radio personality Jonathan Ross, Toy Story & Toy Story 2 star Tom Hanks said that he's willing to do "anything they want me to do" for Toy Story 3, because "they're like mad scientists".

Link

Thursday, January 10, 2008

WALL-E theatrical trailer coming March 7?

I sure think so. It's the date of Disney's next theatrical release, College Road Trip. After that, Disney has no major releases until May, and I would find May to be too late a release date for a first full theatrical trailer.

That said, nothing official has shown up on the Pixar Projection page yet (that's Pixar's site for theater operators), but I would expect some info by mid-February.

Leave your comments below. Tell me what you think. You do know I've been right about stuff like this before, right?

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

WALL-E video game screenshots

Fellow Pixar news blog Upcoming Pixar has just obtained these first screenshots from the upcoming video game based on Pixar's WALL-E.

Looks pretty cool.

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

More on Toy Story musical

Watch this video @ the Orlando Sentinel website.

Has a few shots of the rehearsals for the show, which were held in Toronto (my hometown and one of the coolest cities in the world!)

Toy Story musical to debut this spring

Disney Cruise Line announced today that Toy Story: The Musical, a show based on Pixar's classic film Toy Story, will make it's debut this spring at the Walt Disney Theatre, located aboard the cruise ship Disney Wonder.

The musical, which Disney Cruise Line calls "one of the largest productions ever developed for a cruise ship", will feature, among other things, "a nearly 9-foot-tall version of Rex the dinosaur and a 4-foot-round Hamm the piggybank."

Read the full press release here.

Saturday, January 5, 2008

Finding Nemo Blu-ray details released

Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment has released some much-awaited details about the upcoming release of Pixar's Finding Nemo on Blu-ray Disc.

The details were announced as part of a wider announcement concerning Disney's Blu-ray strategy and release schedule.

Among other things, the Finding Nemo Blu-ray Disc (which will be released this coming fall) will feature full motion picture-in-picture and a brand-new home theater mix in 7.1 surround sound.

Read the press release here.
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Update: Delayed until 2009. See here.

Thursday, January 3, 2008

THQ announces WALL-E video game

Game maker THQ announced today that it has plans to publish a video game based on WALL-E. The game is being developed by THQ's Heavy Iron Studios and is expected to be released around the time WALL-E hits theaters. It will be launched "across all major gaming systems".

For more details, read the press release here.