Inside Out Director Interview

Filmmaking often comes down to one thing: guiding the audience. What do we see, and when, and why? With Pixar, which has the power to create all its images from nothing, there’s always a process of guiding the audience eye to settle on one particular part of the image, no matter how many appealing details may color the margins.

That image control is part of storytelling guidance, too, and often a cover for the real heart of the matter. Pixar’s films use big concepts — toys that have their own lives we never see, a rat who loves to cook, an adventure in a flying house — as a portal to concepts that are much more difficult to capture in a single image or marketing push.

Inside Out has had a very specifically guided path. We know the film is about the five emotions, Joy, Anger, Sadness, Disgust, and Fear, who guide the responses a young girl named Riley has to her changing world. We know Joy is in the lead, but trailers for the film already show us that the core of the movie has Joy and Sadness literally going to the center of their own world — Riley’s mind — on a journey of discovery.

Six weeks ago I went up to Pixar’s campus in Emeryville, CA, to join a few other editors to sit in on sessions with department heads who worked on Inside Out. Our last session was with director Pete Docter and producer Jonas Rivera. The pair discussed the creation of the film, but  Read More »

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In life, we all strive to be happy. Other emotions pop up to take control of our consciousness when happiness isn’t available. So it makes sense that Joy is the main character of Pixar’s June 2015 release Inside Out. Directed by Pete Docter (Monsters Inc., Up), the film takes place in the mind of a young girl named Riley Anderson, and dramatizes the way her five primary emotions – Joy, Sadness, Anger, Fear and Disgust – help inform who she is as a person. After a very happy childhood in the suburbs, Riley and her family move to San Francisco. There, Joy and Sadness get lost in deep in Riley’s mind. As that pair explores the mind, Anger, Fear and Disgust try keep Riley on track, but they can’t.

At the Director’s Guild in Hollywood, CA Docter, and producer Jonas Rivera, presented the first five minutes of Inside Out, an additional scene, and tons of other details. With one year remaining until release, the film had just completed 50% of its animation. So there’s still plenty of work to be done. But it was very obvious, even at this very early stage, that Docter’s latest film is on track to be something very special.

Below, watch a video blog discussing the evening and learn a bit more about the plot, characters and locations of Inside Out. Read More »

Today at the Walt Disney Studios presentation at the D23 Expo, Disney announced two new movies from Pixar Animation Studios. Both films, yet to be officially titled, will be released in the slots following the announced Monsters Inc prequel Monsters University, which hits theaters on June 21st 2013. We just posted about the first of the projects, which involves dinosaurs — read that here. The second project is directed by Monsters Inc/Up helmer Pete Docter, and is set inside the mind. Read more about it, after the jump.

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Pixar’s Up Featurette: Unlikely Heroes

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Disney has released a new featurette for Pixar’s Up titled “Unlikely Heroes.” Director Pete Docter, co-director/co-writer Bob Peterson, and producer Jonas Rivera talk about the unlikely pairing of Carl Fredrickson and Russell, the young wilderness explorer. John Lasseter says that he believes that the comedy which results makes this “the funniest Pixar film we’ve ever made.” Very strong praise from the guy who made Toy Story. Watch the featurette embedded after the jump.
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Last weekend while Devindra and I were at the New York Comic-Con, we had the opportunity to speak with director Pete Docter (Monsters Inc.) and producer Jonas Rivera about Pixar’s new film, Up. Both have had a long and storied history at Pixar, and we were grateful to be able to speak with them about their inspirations for making the film, as well as their take on the direction that Pixar (and the industry) is headed. Hit the jump for the full video interview.

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