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Having seen the newly dimensionalised Toy Story myself I simply have to tell you to go out this weekend and check it out. If you’re in the UK, like me, you’ll only have the first film available to you; those of you in the US will have a double bill of both 1 and 2. I can’t tell you how jealous I am. And I’m not alone in this enthusiasm – both Peter and David have recently made their excitement for the films clear.

After the break, a fun, retro-styled trailer for the double bill that segues very smoothly into a clip. It’s a brilliantly chosen sequence that, despite being presented here in 2D by necessity, should go a long way to helping you imagine the 3D potential of these movies.

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Toy Story 1 & 2 3D Rerelease Movie Trailer

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I didn’t see the Disney 3D panel at Comic Con, where the footage from Pixar’s re-release of Toy Story 1 and 2 in 3D was shown for the first time. But the theatrical trailer for the October release is now online at Yahoo (not in 3D, obviously) and you can see that it captures the spirit of the films very well. Basically, we see the core cast of the films gather together to marvel at the fact that they’re all in 3D. Except for Rex, who turns out to still be rendered in only two dimensions. It’s cute and fun, and probably looks great in actual 3D. Read More »

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Disney’s 3D versions of Pixar’s Toy Story and Toy Story 2 will premiere at the 66th annual Venice Film Festival, which runs September 2nd – 12th 2009. The films will surround the Golden Lion award ceremony at the Palazzo del Cinema at Venice Lido, where the Venice Film Festival will give lifetime achievement awards to the Pixar aniamtors.

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Does Pixar have a gender problem? A blog called Vast Public Indifference thinks so, claiming that the Emmeryville computer animation studio doesn’t have any good women characters as the central protagonists in their stories. Caitlin GD Hopkins claims that most of Pixar’s female characters are “helpers, love interests, and moral compasses to the male characters whose problems, feelings, and desires drive the narratives.” I highly recommend reading Hopkins’ rant as she examines each and every Pixar film, one by one, even taking a look at the studio’s future projects.

Does Pixar have a problem with creating strong female protagonists? I’m a Pixar fanatic and this is a question that has never even occured to me. I would like to think that Hellen/Elasticgirl and Violet were well rounded female characters in Brad Bird’s The Incredibles, and you could argue that WALL-E‘s EVE is both smart and strong. While she is the romantic love interest of the film’s title robot, EVE is a driving force within the story, many levels above Dory from Finding Nemo or Ratatouille‘s only female lead, Colette.

But I do see the point — why does Remy have to be a male rat anyways? Or as someone quickly pointed out in the comments, would that then open the argument up to perpetuating a stereotype by making a female the one who is good at cooking. It might have been more interesting if Linguini was a woman.  Heck, even Colette said that it’s harder for a female to make it in the kitchen.

Discuss: Does Pixar Have a Problem Creating Good Female Characters?

via: Kottke

Pixar and Prince of Persia Lego Coming

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The LEGO Group have announced a new licensing cross-over with Disney Consumer Products (didn’t they invent Robocop?). Set to launch in 2010 are three new lines of interlocking blocks based upon the Prince of Persia movie, Toy Story and Cars. Yep – even more merchandising gold will be reaped by the Cars behemoth.

The first of the brick sets to launch will be the Toy Story and Toy Story 2 kits, out in January of next year. Ouch. Just missing Xmas like that? They must have their reasons but my next letter to Santa will be a little shorter for it. The follow-on Toy Story 3 bricks will hit in May 2010.

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For almost a decade, Toy Story 2 has sat as the best reviewed film of all time on Rotten Tomatoes. But no longer, James Marsh’s documentary Man on Wire has surpassed the Pixar sequel to claim the title of the best reviewed movie of all time. I have yet to see this movie, but I just added it to my Netflix queue. Amazon has the DVD available for preorder for $18.99, out on December 9th. Check out the trailer below. And you can read Magnolia’s press release after the jump.

[flv:http://bitcast-a.bitgravity.com/slashfilm/trailers/manonwiretrailer.flv 470 264]

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Cool Posts From Around the Web:

Pixar fans can rest easy knowing that the Emeryville computer animation powerhouse is not pulling a George Lucas and making uneeded “improvements” to the upcoming Toy Story and Toy Story 2 3D rereleases. producer Jim Morris told Collider, “There’s no new shots.  There’s no new nothing.  It’s exactly the same movie you saw before.” But that doesn’t mean the film won’t have an improved look beyond the addition of a third dimension. Morris says the film looks “much better” because of the upgraded rendering process, which results in “a higher level of detail”. I’m glad to hear that Pixar isn’t messing around with a great story.

Toy Story 1 & 2 Returning to Theaters in 3D

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It was announced today that the first two films in Pixar‘s sole and signature franchise, Toy Story and Toy Story 2, are headed back to movie screens October 2nd, 2009 and February 12th, 2010, respectively, with a complete digital 3D makeover, called Disney Digital 3D to be exact. The films will be an audience primer for Disney-Pixar’s digital 3D Toy Story 3, which hits screens on June 18th, 2010. John Lasseter, director of the first two Toy films and a Pixar poobah, is supervising the 3D process on both, while director Lee Unkrick continues his work on the second sequel.

In 1995, Toy Story was probably the most eye-popping thing I’d ever seen at that young age, in a theater or otherwise. Well, it ranked with my first concert, Beck, but I remember looking at the screen and my brain couldn’t comprehend the smoothness of the characters on screen. It was like the future in Back to the Future 2 had finally arrived. That feeling came surprisingly close again last year watching Beowulf at midnight at IMAX, but not totally. And I guess kids will feel the same way (self-fitting sneaks and attacking 3D movie ads still on the way…) with Toy Story 3 in 3D.

But while the new movie is a whole ‘nother animal, I’m not sure if I’d like to see the original film again in theaters in 3D. It might be like putting two types of syrup on your pancakes. Maybe that’s the goofy, tie-dyed cousin of death, nostalgia, talking. I’m sure it will look amazing, and Pixar revolutionized filmmaking, so they deserve the long theatrical celebration and audience refresher. What do you think?

How Green was My ValleyHave you ever seen the movie How Green Was My Valley? Me neither.

Have you even heard of the movie? Didn’t think so.

Yet John Ford’s film somehow won 5 Oscars including Best Picture. But what’s more shocking: It beat out such classic films as Citizen Kane and The Maltese Falcon for the top honor. (Note: I’m not saying that Ford’s film is a bad movie. I’m just saying that in terms of reviews, user ratings, and all time-top 10 lists, it’s not to the level of Kane and Falcon)
How can that be? As it turns out there are a lot of movies that should have won Best Picture but somehow didn’t. Some of them weren’t even nominated!

Let’s take a look at the list.

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