Soul interview

Soul marks another step forward for Pixar into fascinating narrative storytelling that is not only meant for young children. In fact, this may be the least kid-centric movie they’ve made in quite some time.

Don’t get me wrong – the movie is very good and has plenty of the typical Pixar qualities we’ve come to expect from that studio. But a film about a middle school band teacher who finally gets his big break in music, only to quickly fall into a manhole and be whisked away to another plane of existence to learn how souls work? That’s pretty damn ambitious, and it’s yet another example of how the studio often pushes beyond the most basic version of a story when one of their films is making its way through Pixar’s rigorous process of building, breaking down, and rebuilding a movie to get it right.

A few weeks ago, we spoke with Pete Docter (director/story and screenplay by), Kemp Powers (co-director/story and screenplay by), and Dana Murray (producer) about the clash between creativity and pragmatism, Soul‘s excellent score, and the thought process behind a plot decision which temporarily sidelines the studio’s first lead Black character – a decision which I suspect will generate a lot of discussion in the days ahead. Read More »

earwig and the witch trailer

The first-ever CG animated film from Studio Ghibli is getting a lot of press for the anime studio – beloved for 2D classics like Spirited Away and My Neighbor Totoro – as they enter the unknown territory of 3D animation. And U.S. distributor GKIDS is pulling out all the stops for Earwig and the Witch, directed by Hayao Miyazaki’s son Goro Miyazaki, by recruiting a star-studded English voice cast which includes Richard E. Grant and Kacey Musgraves. Watch the new English dub Earwig and the Witch trailer below.

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Sing 2 cast

Illumination Entertainment’s Sing 2, the sequel to the company’s 2016 animated hit musical, has added a trio of one-named singers to its roster.

Halsey, Pharrell, and Bono have joined the Sing 2 cast, as have Bobby Cannavale (Master of None, Ant-Man), Letitia Wright (Black Panther, Mangrove), Eric Andre (The Eric Andre Show, Man Seeking Woman), and Chelsea Peretti (Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Game Night).
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Chadwick Boseman in Marvel What If...?

Earlier this year, people all over the world were caught off guard by the sudden passing of Black Panther star Chadwick Boseman. With the actor no longer with us, the future of Black Panther II remains unclear, though Kevin Feige has confirmed that the character of T’Challa will not be recast with a new actor. However, there is good news for fans who want to see more of Chadwick Boseman in Marvel Studios projects, because the actor finished recording lines for multiple episodes of Marvel’s What If…? animated series before his untimely passing. Read More »

Middle-Aged Mutant Ninja Turtles Return

The final Saturday Night Live of 2020 was full of holiday hilarity thanks to the return of Kristen Wiig for the official Christmas episode. In fact, there were so many sketches that there was an entire animated short that didn’t make it to air.

Middle-Aged Mutant Ninja Turtles is a hilariously depressing take on the classic Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles animated series that thrived in from the late 1980s through the mid 1990s. It finds the heroes in a half-shell living rather pathetic lives as they deal with the struggles of middle age. Read More »

music of soul featurette

Do ya like jazz? Well, you’re going to, if Pixar has anything to say about it. The upcoming Pixar animated film Soul is a love letter to the music genre, and that love letter will extend beyond the film itself. Disney and Pixar are releasing not one, but three albums related to Soul, one of which is a vinyl album inspired by the film from jazz musician Jon Batiste. And to get you excited about all that jazz, Pixar has released a “Music of Soul” featurette, which goes into the making of the incredible soundtrack of the film. Watch the Music of Soul featurette below.

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disenchantment season 3

Netflix has been missing a little of that Matt Groening magic. The Simpsons creator’s animated fantasy-comedy Disenchantment has seen quite a long gap since its second season aired on the streaming service in September 2019, with promises of a 2020 premiere for season 3 passing by. But Netflix has finally released an official trailer for Disenchantment season 3 revealing a January 2021 return for the fantasy-comedy series. Watch the trailer below.

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soul review

There’s no question that Soul has, well, a soul. In fact, this existential Pixar comedy has many souls jangling around its story, and near as many ideas. It’s a movie bursting to the seams with wild concepts, twists, and turns, almost to the point of feeling overloaded with them. But it is by far one of the most ambitious films that the animation studio has ever produced, and one that continues Pixar’s streak of telling increasingly personal and specific stories that explore what it means to be human.

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Jurassic World Camp Cretaceous Season 2 Trailer

The animated Jurassic World: Camp Cretaceous adventures continue with an all-new season, arriving in January. The DreamWorks Animation/Netflix series follows a bunch of kids dealing with dino-mayhem all over Island Nublar, and season 2 has them stranded on the now-abandoned island. That would be bad enough as it is, but of course, there are all sorts of hungry dinosaurs on this particular island, so things are bound to get hairy. Watch the Jurassic World: Camp Cretaceous season 2 trailer below.

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the magician's elephant

Netflix is making a new animated feature based on The Magician’s Elephant, the book from writer Kate DiCamillo. Featuring a voice cast that includes Sian Clifford, Pixie Davies, Natasia Demetriou, Dawn French, Brian Tyree Henry, Noah Jupe, Aasif Mandvi, and Mandy Patinkin, the story follows a boy looking for his long-lost sister and having to find a “mysterious elephant and the magician (voiced by Benedict Wong) who will conjure it.” We’ve all been there, right? Boy, let me tell you, if I had a nickel for every time I had to find a mysterious elephant and the magician who will conjure it, I’d be a wealthy man.

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