News from the D23 Expo in Anaheim is coming in fast and furious, with the Disney Animation presentation wrapping up just moments ago.
Last month, we reported on Walt Disney Animation Studios’ calendar for the next few years. Most of the project were still rumors at that point…reliable rumors, but still rumors. We now have full confirmation for one of them, plus some exciting additional information about upcoming films we already knew about. Unfortunately, no cameras were allowed inside, so much of the hype is unlikely to surface on video unless Disney itself puts together a compilation highlight reel. But there’s still plenty reason to get pumped for the future of Disney Animation (complete with new stills)! Check it:
Frozen (November 27, 2013)
Up until very recently, we didn’t know hardly anything about Frozen at all, and now the news is blissfully whizzing by so quickly we hardly have a chance to catch our breath before something new arrives. Directors Chris Buck and Jennifer Lee appeared during the presentation to talk about the film, and songwriters Bobby Lopez and Kristen Anderson-Lopez (who also wrote the songs in 2011’s Winnie the Pooh) were in the audience. Voice actors Kristen Bell (Anna) and Josh Gad (Olaf the snowman) made visits to talk about their characters, and the audience was treated to a clip of an Olaf song. However, the real tip of the iceberg (sorry, couldn’t resist) was Indina Menzel, the voice Elsa, performing a song from the film, “Let It Go.”
Get a Horse! (November 27, 2013)
Let’s just pause for a moment and marvel at the fact that there will be a new, black-and-white, theatrical Mickey Mouse short in the year 2013. This project has been widely known about, but of course there’s no turning down some more info! Director Lauren MacMullen, producer Dorothy McKim, animators Eric Goldberg and Adam Green, and longitme Disney story artist Burny Mattinson were in attendance to give the audience an exclusive first look at the short in its entirety. It was confirmed that Get a Horse! will premiere with Frozen in theaters this November… as if we needed another reason to flock to the theater! This release will be one for the ages.
Big Hero 6 (November 7, 2014)
The audience was shown exclusive footage of director Don Hall‘s Big Hero 6, which was officially announced last spring. The main character will be a boy named Hiro, and now we know his sidekick is an inflatable robot. We’ll need a trailer to get a handle on just what this film will look like (as no cameras were allowed in the D23 presentation), but attendees’ responses were enthusiastic!
Directed by Byron Howard (Tangled) and written by Jared Bush, this is the first time Disney acknowledged this project’s existence (but we’ve known about it for a while!). Both Howard and Bush appeared to discuss the film, which will focus on animals in a world where humans don’t exist. The attention to animal detail will be so important to this film that Imagineer Joe Rohde, vice president of Disney’s Animal Kingdom, was consulted. It’s worth noting Disney said Zootopia is a working title.
While there were a few other projects rumored to be in development for Disney Animation, nothing else was revealed at the presentation. However, I don’t suppose we should have expected it to be. Big Hero 6 was only announced a mere 18 months before its release, so it’s only natural for Disney to hold off unveiling anything else until (perhaps) the next D23 Expo in 2015.