Here’s a mystery for you to ponder today: what is Pixar’s next original project after Brave? Today Disney penciled in a release date — November 27, 2013 — for an original, non-sequel Pixar film. There is no announced title, and no creative team publicly linked to the project. So what is it? Read More »

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Tim Burton isn’t the only notable director whose promise showed from early on — we have here a student film by fellow California Institute of the Arts alumnus Pete Docter, titled Winter. Docter, of course, is one of Pixar’s most prominent staff members and is best known for directing Monsters, Inc. and Up. He has also done screenwriting and animation work on Toy Story, Wall-E and various other Pixar films.

In Docter’s short film, a young child gets excited when he notices falling snow, only to find that once he’s gotten into his winter clothes, he’s so bundled up that he’s unable to actually enjoy the snow. At just one minute and 36 seconds, Winter has probably the highest joy to time ratios you’ll encounter all day. Watch it after the jump.

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Pixar's Up vs. Above then Beyond

In 2005, students of the French academy ESRA (Ecole Supérieure de Réalisation Audiovisuelle) started production on a computer animated short film called Above then Beyond. The film was completed a year later. In 2009, Pixar released their tenth computer animated feature film Up. A year later, people have begun to notice the similarities between the two films. Was Pixar inspired by this French short film, or is it all just a coincidence?

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A Letter From Pete Docter

Pete Docter

Have you ever written a famous person a letter and not gotten a response? Yeah, me neither – who has the time, really? But I always find it interesting what kind of people actually response.

A young man named Adam wrote a letter to Pete Docter, director of Pixar’s Monsters Inc and Up, in 2008 asking for a signed photo. He didn’t get a signed photo, but a few months later he did get a response — not just some form letter, but a handwritten two-sided letter, complete with personal doodles from Docter. How cool is that? Check out the full letter, after the jump.

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Monsters Inc

After over a year of speculation, yesterday it was finally officially announced that Pixar is working on a Monsters Inc sequel. Not only that, but Monsters Inc 2 even has a release date: November 16th 2012.But the one thing absent from the announcement was any mention of a writer or director. Who is writing Monsters Inc 2? What is Pete Docter‘s mystery project? We delve into these questions and more, after the jump.

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John Lasseter and Pete Docter
/Film reader Ezequiel G points me towards a video that was recently uploaded to the official Disney/Pixar youtube page. The video is a flashback to 1995, fifteen years ago, as we get to listen and watch a conversation between John Lasseter and Pete Docter as they figure out the how to best bring to life what a character says through their movements for the original Toy Story film.

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The Original Pitch For Monsters Inc.

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One of the many things that sets Pixar apart from other animation studios (less so Disney these days, you might imagine) is their dedication to nurture and cultivation. This applies both to the talent, the animators and directors, but also to their projects. As such, many of their films begin with a pitch that’s rather different than the film we finally end up with in cinemas.

On the recent publicity rounds to support Up, Pete Docter was given a chance to recount his original pitch for Monsters Inc. You can read a transcript of what he said after the break.

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Monsters Inc

A Monsters Inc sequel has been rumored to be in the works for the last couple years. But that might not be the case after-all.. or atleast not with writer/director Pete Docter at the helm. When talking to New York Magazine about Up, Docter let it slip that he is already working on his next project:

“I’m mostly focused on the next film that I have in development already,” said Docter. “That one I just started. We finished Up, I took some time off, spent some time in Europe and Japan doing publicity over there, so I’ve only been on this for like a couple weeks.”

When asked if this project was the rumored Monsters Inc 2, Docter replied “I’m not working on … I’m working on something else, but I cannot announce what it is.” He confirmed that the project would probably be ready fr the big screen in 2013 or 2014. Of course, this doesn’t mean that a Monsters, Inc sequel isn’t in development, it just means that he’s actively involved in “something else.” Anyone have any ideas what this project might be? E-mail me anonymously.


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