Disney’s Planes, the former direct-to-DVD film that’s now been given the full-blown, 3D theatrical treatment, has just announced its star. Dane Cook, one of the world’s most famous and successful comedians, though paradoxically not necessarily the most popular comedian, will voice the lead character of Dusty (above), a plane who hopes to be a racer but is afraid of heights. Jon Crier was originally cast in the role. Read the full press release below. Read More »

‘Planes’ Trailer: Disney Does Pixar

Pixar seems done with the Cars universe for the time being, but Disney isn’t letting a franchise that popular lay fallow. A couple of years back, DisneyToon Studios began work on a direct-to-DVD spinoff titled Planes, about a crop duster named Dusty who unexpectedly lands a spot in world-class air race.

Then, much like its protagonist, the project found itself called up to the big leagues when Disney decided to go ahead with a real theatrical release. A new trailer has just arrived, almost two years after the first, and you can check it out after the jump.

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Grownup fans will argue til the cows come home about which Pixar movie is the best (it’s Ratatouille, FYI), but when it comes to the studio’s worst film, there’s a strong consensus that Cars 2 is the studio’s low point. Even the original Cars was beloved more by kids than their parents, and the sequel has the dubious distinction of being the first Pixar movie to ever get a “Rotten” critical score.

Nevertheless, the franchise’s success with the under-12 set can’t be ignored, and so Disney announced a few years ago that a spinoff titled Planes was in the works. (Yes, I mean Disney, not Pixar.) The feature was originally slated to go straight to DVD in the fall of 2013, but now the studio’s changing course with a planned theatrical release next summer. More after the jump.

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To be fair, a low point for Pixar is still what would be considered a middle or even high point for most studios, but that doesn’t change the fact that most people over the age of 12 see the two Cars films as the nadir of Pixar’s oeuvre. It’s doubtful that the direct-to-DVD spinoff Planes will fare much better with that crowd, either, especially as it’s not even being made by Pixar — rather, it’s being produced by Disney Toon Studios, the same outfit behind other home video sequels like Mulan II, Tarzan II, Bambi III, The Fox and the Hound 2, etc.

But the Cars films do make a ton of money with the younger set, and like it or not Planes will probably do brisk business as well. The Mouse House, in fact, is so confident in Planes‘ future success that it’s apparently already begun developing Planes 2: Fire and Rescue. If there’s one silver lining for Cars (and by extension Planes) haters, it’s that the spinoff-sequel is still a ways away, as the first Planes has just been pushed back half a year to Fall 2013. Read more after the jump.

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Last year, it was revealed that Disney was developing a film called Planes, a direct-to-DVD computer animated spin-off from Cars. Its notable that while the trailer mentions the story takes place “from above the world of Cars”, the teaser has no mention of Pixar AT ALL. Even the Disney-Pixar production company logo above the movie title only reads “Disney”. The movie was produced by Disney Toon Studios, the outfit behind many DVD sequels for Disney films.

Remember the last time Disney began doing direct-to-dvd spin-off/sequels of their classic animated films? Yeah, that was a disaster — a disaster that John Lasseter ended in 2007. Well it looks like the mouse house needs more money and Lasseter is on board.

I’m sure Pixar wants no credit what-so-ever. I have no interest what-so-ever in seeing this movie. Watch the one and a half minute teaser trailer embedded after the jump. Please leave your thoughts in the comments below.
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A Cars spin-off called Planes has been in development for some time by DisneyToon Studios but we’ve known little about the story. All we knew is that it would be a direct to DVD title somehow related to cars, being developed as ““a semi-sequel and spinoff franchise to Cars, one meant to take advantage of the enormously lucrative direct-to-video market.”

Now the film has been officially announced with a story revolving around small-town dreamer Dusty who wants to enter a globe-circling air race, but is afraid of heights. Let me guess: he gives up on his dream of winning the race and takes a job flying movie ad banners low over the crowds at Comic Con instead. Or maybe not. All the official info is in the press release after the break. Read More »


We recently heard that Pixar is developing a film called Planes, intended to be a spin-off from Cars. The film is meant for direct-to-DVD distribution, and some took the move as a sign of a slide for Pixar. When a studio is able to rule the theatrical animation landscape, why churn out direct disc fodder?

Turns out that report might have been only partially correct, as there’s now a new spin that says, yes, Planes is in development, but from Disney Toon Studios rather than Pixar. Read More »


It had to happen eventually. Pixar has flirted with the idea of direct to DVD sequels in the past — notably with Toy Story 2 — and as the studio veers more overtly towards sequels that leverage proven characters (the Toy Story films, Cars 2, Monsters Inc. 2) it is probably inevitable that we’d see a direct to DVD Pixar project.

Reportedly, the first one to actually happen could be Planes, which is intended as a spin-off from Cars. Read More »